The influential trade publication founded by Robert Parker, the world’s most famous wine critic, The Wine Advocate, has recently published its impressions about the wines of Ribera del Duero and Castilla y Léon. We at Abadía Retuerta are delighted with the excellent ratings given by Luis Gutiérrez, TWA taster for Spain.
Gutiérrez was particularly impressed by the “freshness and varietal typicity” of our Pago Garduña Syrah 2013. “This could very well be my favorite Garduña ever”, he writes. “One of the most pure expressions of this variety in Spain”.
In his report, Gutiérrez highlights the maturity of our estate’s vineyards, which at 25 years old, are producing defined and precise wines. “They are a great representation of their vintage and place”, he adds.
Luis Gutiérrez: “This could very well be my favourite Pago Garduña vintage ever”
With 94 points, Pago Garduña 2013 is our best rated wine. “I loved the nose of this pure Syrah, which is sourced from chalky soils surrounded by pine trees at some 810 meters altitude (…) The wine is very aromatic and varietal, and reminded me of the reds from the northern Rhône, with a mixture of violets, smoky bacon and tar. The palate is medium-bodied, a little austere, with vibrant acidity and very good freshness. It is lighter and more drinkable than other years, more elegant and ethereal”.
Below you will find the ratings of the rest of the wines, along with the critic’s comments. On this occasion, Luis Gutiérrez tasted the reds of vintages 2013 (when Petit Verdot was not released) and 2014, plus the 2015 vintage of our white LeDomaine.
91. Abadía Retuerta LeDomaine 2015
“It feels incredibly fresh for a very warm vintage like 2015. There are Sauvignon aromas, but they are not that dominant, as the variety tends to heavily mark the wines. The oak is nicely integrated, and in a way it reminded me of a white Bordeaux. It should develop nicely in bottle.”
93+. Abadía Retuerta Pago Negralada 2014
“The warmer growing season was noticeable in the 2014 Pago Negralada, the Tempranillo from a vineyard with relatively warm soils that provides good ripeness. This style of vintage worked really well for Tempranillo and the wine comes through as terribly balanced, with energy, power and elegance”.
93. Abadía Retuerta Pago Valdebellón 2014
“This year seems to have worked quite well for the variety [Cabernet Sauvignon], and there are some minty notes here, but not lacking ripeness. The palate shows incredible energy and power, with very good freshness. It combines concentration with elegance and comes through as harmonious. This is a wine that should develop nicely in bottle”.
92. Abadía Retuerta Pago Garduña 2014
“Fleshy and juicier than the 2013, it has a little more volume and ripeness. This is possibly a more complete vintage, but somehow the wine comes through as less exciting than the 2013”.
93. Abadía Retuerta Petit Verdot 2014
“The palate is full-bodied, with fine-grained, abundant tannins, chewy and powerful, a wine for a winter stew on a cold day in front of the fire. It should be a long-lived red, with all the components to develop more nuances in the bottle. This could very well be the best Petit Verdot ever produced at the property”.
92+. Abadía Retuerta Selección Especial 2014
“This wine changed from the 2010 vintage, as before that year they used quite a lot of oak and the wine was very oaky. They have now removed the excess, and the wines show more precision and purity. It’s a little riper and concentrated than the 2013, with more clout but perhaps a little more predictability. This has all the ingredients to be a great commercial success”.
91. Abadía Retuerta Pago Negralada 2013
“2013 was a more challenging vintage for the grape, and the wine shows some more notes from the élevage, from the toasty spectrum of aroma, than in other years. The palate is light to medium-bodied, with some dusty tannins and good freshness”.
91. Abadía Retuerta Pago Valdebellón 2013
“This cool year shows the herbal and peppery aromas of the variety, with notes of bell pepper and tomato leaf plus a creamy touch of oak, because the barrels seem to have marked the wine more. The palate is medium-bodied with those herbal flavors providing a slightly bitter finish”.
93. Abadía Retuerta Selección Especial 2013
“2013 was a heterogeneous vintage, capable of the best and the worst, where the work in the vineyard shows in the wines. This is a very successful cuvée, produced in large quantities. It’s a far cry from the very oaky wines of yesteryear, very representative of the place and vintage; having enough vineyards and different varieties, they can select what goes into the wine each year depending on the natural conditions, as they also sell some in bulk. In 2013 the difference is that they used some more Merlot and a touch of Petit Verdot, which provided some extra punch. This is a great success over the vintage conditions, very accessible and drinkable, with contained alcohol. The good news for consumers is that this cuvée is reaching a very similar level of quality than the single vineyard bottlings”.