Vega Sicilia has been hailed for decades as THE greatest wine estate in Spain. It has produced – and still produces – among the finest and longest-living red wines of that country. Old bottles prove that the wines can evolve at a snail’s pace and offer the drinker a truly profound experience with bottles of outstanding complexity and class.
These latest releases, the 2014s with the 2009 Unico and NV Unico Reserva Especial, are utterly ravishing. Quantities are, unsurprisingly, very limited so if these are of interest, please do not delay.
£636 per case of 3
The flagship wine from Vega Sicilia. A blend of Tempranillo and Cabernet Sauvignon.
The freshness of the aromas is striking and the fruit, which is redder than is perhaps usual for Vega Sicilia. The nose is really spicy and nutty and a touch high-toned. There's a real burst of fresh acidity on the palate, too. And those upright, piquant tannins. There's innate complexity here: a sustained busy-ness that speaks of great class and fascination to come. A wonderful wine, no doubt.
"2009 seems like a great vintage for Vega Sicilia...98/100." Luis Gutierrez
NV Unico Reserva Especial
£801 per case of 3
An old Spanish tradition - a blend of the best wines from various harvests to showcase the estate's style. This 2019 release is a blend of 2006, 2007 and 2009 wines.
Very nice nose, really piquant, of red fruit and coffee scents, the fruit really quite domestic smelling. There are touches of smoke and turmeric and ginger. There's a plush instant up front but it quickly gathers rich and tacky tannins. There's lasting freshness here, as well as density to the rich tannic structure. Very long and very fine wine.
"The fruit has a more mature style than the 2009 (understandably) and there is superb tarry character adding complexity to the finish. Slinky tannins. 18/20." Richard Hemming MW
£261 per case of 3
Predominantly Tempranillo, blended with a little Merlot. Produced in exactly the same way each year, the characteristic of the vintage (the weather and growing conditions) becomes clear.
A beautifully well-defined nose that takes in scents of smoky bacon, mineral earth, cocoa and dried herbs framing the slightly high-toned dark plum fruit aromas. This is dense-but-fresh across the tongue and there's a hint of dried meat (biltong?) within. A mid-weight wine, less bulky than some previous vintages, but it is really very elegant, offering lasting, fresh grip. Super shape and style here. And it becomes very minerally fresh in its grip. Stonking.
"It has good complexity and nuance, and the palate is medium to full-bodied and intense, with pungent flavors and great length and persistence. Truly spectacular! 96/100." Luis Gutierrez
£192 per case of 6
100% Tempranillo from Toro, Castilla y Leon
A creamy-dark sort of a nose, really rather smoky showing its ripe bramble fruit and masses of dry spice: clove and rooty liquorice aromas. Entry is really very plush after which it gains in very fine, earthy-mineral, dense structure. Not a big wine, but a wine of really good freshness, with excellent fresh grip towards the back. Super stuff and rather less assertive than the norm for Toro.
"This is a great vintage for Pintia. 94/100." Luis Gutierrez
£246 per case of 6
The Rothschild/Vega Sicilia joint venture in Rioja.
The nose is rich and plus, redolent of dark plums and chocolate. And the entry is all chocolate and plum, too, before the rich, fine and integrated tannins kick in and plunge forwards, finally becoming drily mineral. This is a long wine, with a dense push through. Very long and the grip at the back is pretty intense. Fully structured finish here. Superb example.
"It's a serious, modern and nicely crafted Tempranillo with a touch of sweet spices and smoke. It should continue evolving nicely in bottle. 94/100." Luis Gutierrez
All prices are quoted under bond. Stock will be shipped later this year.