Benjamin Romeo Predicador Tinto is made from 96 percent Tempranillo, 2 percent Garnacha, 1 percent Graciano and 1 percent Mazuelo.
Predicador, or “Preacher,” named after Clint Eastwood’s everyman character in the 1985 film Pale Rider, is composed of 96 percent Tempranillo, 2 percent Garnacha, 1 percent Graciano and 1 percent Mazuelo. The grapes are sourced from 15 different plots within San Vicente and Briones in Rioja Alta which on average yield less than 2 kg per vine. The wine is fermented in oak and stainless steel with a two-day cold maceration and aged for sixteen months in new French oak. The wine was filtered but not fined. This vintage some La Cueva del Contador, Contador and La Vina de Andres were added for concentration and balance.
The aromatics open up with crushed red cherries, balsamic notes and the sweet baking spices of cinnamon and clove. The fruity and spicy characteristics found in the nose follow through on the palate, along with dried cranberry, black cherry and elegant fine-grained tannin supporting the tart red fruit and adding to its length and depth.
Predicador was a wine that was born as a minor wine at a very specific moment in time, and many people (including yours truly) had not quite realized it has grown into an adult, proper Rioja red. The 2014 Predicador I tasted had only been bottled for two weeks and was a little dizzy. But if you wait or can read between the lines, it's terribly perfumed and intoxicating, with penetrating aromas of macerated cherries and very decayed violets, a little decadent. The palate is silky, with superb tannins and great balance. This is among the best vintages ever released since the initial 2004.
- Wine Advocate 92 Points
Burgo Viejo Rioja Reserva is made from 85% Tempranillo, 10% Garnacha & 5% Carignan.
Burgo Viejo Rioja Reserva presents with red ruby color; black pepper and vanilla flavors and some mature black fruit taste too. Well-balanced, well-structured and elegant in mouth displaying some splendid taste of fruit and bouquet too.
Burgo Viejo Reserva Wine vinification has occurred blending different grape varieties to produce an aged wine that will surely keep maturity and fullness from the vineyard until the very moment of uncorking.
VINIFICATION: Alcoholic fermentation in stainless steel vats at controlled temperature; aged in American and French oak barrels -50% each- for 18 months.
Enjoy it with red meat and game.
"Sweet, ripe, plummy nose followed by notes of rosemary and thyme. Enlivening wine with a long and complex aftertaste." Decanter 90 Points
"(raised in a 50/50 combination of new and used French and American oak barrels for 18 months) Vivid ruby-red. An expansive, highly perfumed bouquet evokes ripe black and blue fruits, cola, incense and toasty oak, with a sexy floral overtone. Silky and broad on the palate, offering concentrated black raspberry, cherry-vanilla and coconut flavors that become spicier with aeration. In an emphatically fruity style, showing solid closing thrust, strong persistence and gently gripping tannins. - Josh Raynolds"
- Antionio Galloni's Vinous (February 2019), 91 pts
"A small step up in price, the 2014 Reserva (85% Tempranillo, 10% Graciano, and 5% Mazuelo) has a similar elegance and purity, with classic vanilla-laced notes of spice, garrigue, cedar, and both cherry and darker currant-like fruits. It’s balanced, has fine tannins, and is an outstanding wine. I like it today, but I suspect it’s capable of keeping for a decade."
- Jeb Dunnuck (March 2019), 90 pts
Early to bud and early to ripen, the 2014 vintage was our third drought year in a row. Dry, even temperatures marched the grapes along at a steady clip all year and created a wine with beautifully integrated fruit, acidity, and tannin.
Dense and dark magenta in color, this is a lithe and energetic vintage with lifted aromatics and a purity of fruit that lights up the medium-bodied tannin structure. The nose promises fresh black fruits, cherries and a touch of graphite, and the palate completely delivers. Juicy blackberry, plum, and bright cherry explode in the mouth, and develop into savory notes of baked black fruit and fresh pencil shavings on the mid-palate.
Eagle Summit Vineyard’s signature eucalyptus appears on the back palate to brighten the fruit, showing fragrant peppermint and warm, toasty spices through the finish. Whether you open it young or wait a few decades, this vintage does Howell Mountain proud--sophisticated and smart, with a rustic wild side.
Cresta Velia Cabernet Sauvignon Howell Mountain is made from 100 percent Cabernet Sauvignon.
Aged in 100% French oak (86% new)
• 100% Cabernet Sauvignon from Eagle Summit Vineyard on Howell Mountain
• Equal amounts of clone 4 and clone 7
• unfined and unfiltered
"The 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon is 100% Cabernet aged 20 months in 86% new French oak, with the typical suspects in terms of cooperage – Darnajou, Taransaud, and Remond. This opaque purple-colored wine has plenty of mulberry and blackcurrant fruit along with hints of blackberries, camphor and incense. The are some notes of unsmoked cigar and licorice as well. Ripe, medium to full-bodied and luscious, it is a classic to drink over the next 15 or more years. - RP"
- Robert Parker's Wine Advocate (Issue #228, December 2016), 90 pts
Dr. Loosen Erdener Pralat Alte Reben Riesling Grosses Gewachs is made from 100 percent Riesling.
Erni Loosen has quickly established himself as one the premier GG producers in the Mosel Valley. This Erdener Pralat GG Reserve is sourced from a 90-year-old parcel, is meticulously hand-picked, fermented bone dry from immaculate, botrytis-free fruit. It is fermented and aged in neutral oak, and garners it reserve status by being aged for 24 months on the lees, then spends another two years in bottle before release. Erdener Pralat is Loosen’s finest vineyard and this wine has it all: Majestic aromas and flavors of orange marmalade, dried apricot, kiwi, pink grapefruit, beeswax and wet stone. Extraordinary creamy texture from the extended lees aging leads to a medium-bodied elixir with a long, persistent finish.
This is serious juice and can stand up to highly seasoned chicken, pork and seafood dishes.
The 2014 Erdener Prälat Riesling GG Réserve Alte Reben is clear, refined and aromatic on the precise, delicate and highly finessed nose that indicates ripe and elegant Riesling fruit with very fine red slate aromas. Full-bodied yet filigreed, crystalline and salty on the palate, this is a powerful, intense and rich yet refined and stimulatingly salty Prälat based on entirely healthy grapes. The finish is very long, intense and powerful yet remains crystalline and stimulating and still asks us to be patient: The best is yet to come. Tasted at the domain in September 2020.
-Wine Advocate 96 Points
A masterpiece for this difficult vintage. Stunning aromas of tree fruits. Very concentrated, creamy and polished but not a jot too heavy. This wine impresses all the way through the very long and silky finish.
-James Suckling 96 Points
Finca Sobreno Ildefonso Toro is made from 100% Tinta de Toro
Very Old Vines (Minimum 80 years of age)
Aged in 100% new French Oak Barrels for 18 months + 12 months in the bottle
The wine is produced in very limited quantity from the estate's oldest vineyards (80 years old vines) and is fermented in 2,000-liter open-top fermentation vats. Our winemaker punches down the cap by hand three times a day using the traditional pigeage method to ensure optimal extraction.
The name of the wine is the surname of the San Ildefonso family, father Roberto and daughter Paloma, and represents the apex of their winemaking tradition.
Deep cherry color.
Very expressive, elegant and complex with ripe fruit, mineral notes, sweet spices, chocolate aromas and intense toasts.
Powerful, tasty, round and very smooth. We find again black berries, mineral notes, chocolates with roasted aromas. Very long after taste.
The soil is formed by sediments of sand, clay and limestone, which produce a dark lime-bearing topsoil, with fine and coarse sands.
This year we had low rain falls getting very healthy bunches. Besides, cool nights and not very hot days at the end of the cycle were excellent for a complete ripening of the grapes, full of nuances.
Winemaking and aging
The fruit is manually selected and picked in small cases. After destemming the grapes are stored in 2.000 liter open fermenter tanks and cold maceration at 8ºC during 8 days. Three times a day the cap of the skins is submerged manually (pigeage) and after the alcoholic fermentation is finished at a controlled temperature, the wine is macerated until the wine maker determines the appropriate extraction polyphenols. The malolactic fermentation is carried out in new French oak barrels. The wine was aged in new French oak barrels for 16 months, followed by another 12 months minimum in the bottle.
Ideal for red meats, lamb, roasted meat and strong cheeses
"The 2014 Finca Sobreño Ildefonso is a Tinta de Toro selection from 60-year-old vineyards fermented with indigenous yeasts and matured in oak barrels for 18 months with rackings every six months. It's serious and combines power and elegance, it shows very good balance and freshness and fine-grained tannins. Great showing. 50,000 bottles were filled in May 2018. - Luis Gutierrez"
- Robert Parker's Wine Advocate (Issue #238, August 31st 2018), 91 pts
"The tiny production 2014 Ildefonso Toro is also all Tempranillo that spent 16 months in new French oak followed by a year in bottle before being released. It has more black and blue fruits, with subtle violet and chocolate notes, medium to full body, a stacked mid-palate, and a big finish. It’s a rich, powerful wine that has loads to love. It too should easily keep for 10-15 years."
- Jeb Dunnuck (March 2019), 91 pts
The Cabernet Sauvignon Casey’s Lakeview is similarly inky bluish/purple to the rim. Tasting like blood, this wine is dense and rich with lots of chocolate, espresso, earth and spice. It is deep, full-bodied, and again, a masculine style of wine that needs at least 4-5 years of cellaring and should keep for 25 or more years.
Lakeview Vineyard is the winery’s mid-block vineyard planted to a combination of clone 6 & 337 Cabernet Sauvignon on 101-14 rootstock. Excellent drainage from the rocky and chalky soils plus plenty of sunlight throughout the day produces wines of bold character with mouth filling flavors.
Organic farming methods are used to produce this Cabernet Sauvignon Casey's Lakeview vineyard. Vines are 17 years old. Ageing in French oak barrels (85% new) for 20 months, then 12 months in bottle prior to release. Non-filtered.
"The 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon Casey's Lakeview Vineyard is the most overt of these wines. Superripe black cherry, plum, chocolate and licorice add to an impression of flamboyance that sits on the edge of being too much. The effects of the drought are felt in the wine's slightly roasted profile. - Antonio Galloni"
- Antonio Galloni's Vinous (December 2016), 91 pts
This grape has a romantic and historical connection to the land. It is believed to have originated in Greece and made it way up to the Friuli-Venezia Giulia by way of Slovenia. Documents dating back to the 1300s show that Ribolla Gialla was planted in the region.
Fresh and floral bouquet and a consistent and rightly acidulous taste. Its pleasant freshness and fruity notes of green apple are enhanced by its characteristic acidity.
Accurate wine making process 'in white'. Soft pressing followed by a 24 hours juice cold settling at 9°C. Alcoholic fermentation at 18°C. The wine is aged until bottling in stainless steel tanks with weekly lees stirring.
Pairs as aperitif, lean appetizers, delicate soups, salty fish and white meat dishes.
The Vitas Estate
The winery has been in the family since 1935, for four generations. It is located in the wine-producing area of DOC Friuli Aquileia, on a clayey-marly and sandy-calcareous soil (the so-called Magredi), one of the ingredients which, together with the influence of the sea, a friendly sun, an average temperature of 14° and the absence of night frosts, create a perfect microclimate for vine-growing.
Tasting Note: This very aromatic Syrah has hints of black pepper, dark berries and herbs and a bloody, earthy character on the nose. The palate is full-bodied with velvety but structured tannins and a balanced natural acidity. The finish is fresh, long and supple. Best served at 16 to 18 °C, this wine will greatly benefit from decanting when drunk within the first 3 to 5 years after bottling.
Andrea Mullineux told me that their debut 2012 Mullineux Iron Syrah has been the hardest cru to fine-tune over the years. Indeed, it has been trialed since 2005 but never bottled...until now. "We have been working hard to perfect the acidity here and it's been important to get life into the soil, getting the vineyard healthy, so that it can be picked with good acidity. Because it is dry farmed, in a space of three days, it can god from 22 to 26 Brix – so picking decision is critical," she said. It has a subtle marine influence coming through on the nose with macerated black cherries, boysenberry jam and touches of iodine. The palate is medium-bodied with fine, quite grainy tannins, very nicely poised with touches of fig and marmalade towards the slightly saline finish. This is a strong debut to form the trio of Syrah single "terroir" offerings.
"The 2013 Iron Syrah has a roundness and softness on the nose that almost belies its complexity - red berry fruit, red peppercorns, rooibos and undergrowth scents that are very well defined. The palate is medium-bodied with ripe tannin, wonderfully savory and quite gamey, and beautifully balanced with impressive volume and sustain on the finish that you would have difficult distinguishing from a top Côte-Rôtie. This is an excellent Syrah, my only reservation being that there is a touch of heat on the finish. - Neal Martin"
- The Wine Advocate (erobertparker.com, November 2015), 93 pts
"Similar to the Schist Syrah in its weight and meatiness, the Iron Syrah offers a more elegant, immediate appeal. Dark red plum, smoked meat, and savory herbs are seamlessly integrated on a lush, juicy and firmly structured palate, finishing very very long."
- iwinereview.com (January 2016), 95 pts
Stephane Marchand Sancerre Blanc is made from Sauvignon Blanc.
The wine is a blend of the following Sancerre terroirs: 50% Caillotttes, 40% Terres Blanches and 10% Silex.
The grapes are coming from parcels located in Amigny, a hamlet just South of Chavignol. Light gold in color, the complexity and balance of this round and ample wine are linked to the mosaic of Sancerre terroirs that bring a fresh, lively and fruity character, richness, power, and typical minerality. Medium acidity and freshness bring out attractive peach and citrus fruits.
Pair nicely with fresh goat cheeses, oysters with lemon, grilled lemon chicken breasts and Mexican dishes. Serve these whites at 46 °F (8 °C).