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New Vintages of Spanish Gems from Vega Sicilia: Macan, Alion and Pintia

New Vintages of Spanish Gems from Vega Sicilia: Macan, Alion and Pintia

“...Spain’s undisputed equivalent of first growth.” —Oxford Wine Companion

“One of a handful of world-class wines that transcend their regions by sheer force of personality.” –Stephen Tanzer

Vega Sicilia is considered by many to be the most rare and exclusive wine from Spain. Located at Valbuena del Duero, 30 km east of the ancient university town of Valladolid, it was the first winery in Spain to plant Bordelaise varieties back in the late 1800s; these vines are still planted today alongside Tempranillo, and are a small portion of what makes up Único. The wines of Vega Sicilia are renowned for their elegance and longevity. Perhaps the most iconic wine in all of Spain and most certainly from the winery, Único is legendary. It is a transporting wine that combines elegance and power that is released at an average of ten years of age, but which can easily cellar for at least another forty. Único is made from only the best selection of fruit; due to 2008’s difficult vintage, production was down by more than half. The Único NV Reserva Especial is always a blend of three outstanding vintages that go as far back as twenty years. It is a nod to the tradition of the area and is the last wine in Spain to be made in this style. Lastly, Valbuena is nothing short of a baby Único: it is always aged 5 years before release and has the complex, powerful and elegant components to cellar well for at least
another fifteen to twenty.
10% off on any 6, 15% off on any 12
Wines set to arrive end of March
All Wines below are owned by Vega Sicilia
Scores are not in yet, but one can look at past scores if that's your thing
2014 Vega Sicilia Valbuena Ribera del Duero
Newsletter Price: $219.99
Bottled in 2016, Valbuena ‘14 is a blend of 95% Tinto Fino and 5% Merlot. It ages in a mix of barriques and larger, 20,000 liter oak vats.
2009 Vega Sicilia Unico Ribera del Duero
Newsletter Price: $599.99
The spectacular 2009, made of 96% Tinto Fino and 4% Cabernet, is being released 10 years after it was made, as it always used to be the case with Unico. A cold
winter with constant frost gave way to a wild spring, where the temperatures varied dramatically between night and day. The slow vegetative development helped
created a very elegant, and balanced wine.
98 Points James Suckling: The elevage is complex, building from smaller barrels to larger barrels over a period of six years, finishing in larger vats. Then four years in bottle. Non-sequential releasing with the 2005 and 2006 being released after the 2007 and 2008. This 2009 has good ripeness and deep fruit-presence on the nose with rich red and dark plums, subtly earthy spice, cedar and fresh tobacco. There’s terrific concentration on the palate and very ripe dark-plum, blueberry and cherry flavors. The tannins are fresh, very long and carry flavors deep. Natural freshness and effortless power, too - a hallmark of Unico! Very open-knit and approachable now, this will age for two decades easily, and then some more. 

2019 Vega Sicilia Unico Reserva Especial 
Newsletter Price: $749.99
This wine is a nod to the tradition of the area, and is the last wine in Spain to be made in this style: always a blend of 3 outstanding vintages, with the oldest wine always at least twenty years old.A blend of 2006, 2007, and 2009, the Reserva Especial 19 had a slightly longer elevage in oak, with the 2006, and 2007 spending more time in cask than the 2009.

Vega Sicilia and Benjamin de Rothschild began the Macán project 10 years ago with the steady acquisition of parcels in Rioja, purchased from small farmers. In this way, they quietly built up what is now a sizeable holding of 120 hectares, all within 10 km of the village of San Vicente in the Rioja Alta. (The name “Macán” is derived from a traditional name for the people of this sub-region of Rioja. ) They focused on the best terroirs, with stony calcareous clay soils, complex mesoclimatic influences, and deep-rooted Tempranillo vines ranging in age from 25-80 years old. Each year, the winery aims to produce two wines, Macán and Macán Clasico, in a tradition they took from Bordeaux, where it is standard to produce a “first” and a “second” wine; the first is made with lots that show more potential, and the second is more expressive and easy to drink when young. This is perhaps the most notable influence of the Rothschild family on the project, because otherwise all viticulture and winemaking is in the hands of the Vega Sicilia team. The style of the wines is certainly not ‘traditional’ Rioja– for example, after trials, they decided against American oak. Perhaps the term neo-classical is most apt, with complex mineral-infused fruit and discreet oak influences, underpinned by a fine but firm structure.
2015 Macan Clasico
       Newsletter Price: $59.99
100% Tempranillo aged in a mix of French foudres and large oak vats
2014 Macan Macan
       Newsletter Price: $104.99
The powerful 2014 was held an extra year in bottle prior to being released. A great move by the winery which has finally mastered the terroir in Rioja. The wine has beautiful fruit, with firm, and elegant tannins

Alion is Vega Sicilia’s second project in Ribera del Duero. There are 130 hectares of land divided into three large blocks, seventy of which are located on the Vega Sicilia estate itself: 30 hectares in the Padilla de Duero, and another 30 hectares in the nearby town of Pesquera de Duero. Alion is the “younger sibling” to Vega Sicilia; made with the same elegance, but aged three years before release and meant to drink within the first 15-20 years, though there is no doubt that it can age longer
2015 Alion Ribera de Duero
       Newsletter Price: $127.99
Alion 2015 sees the introduction of 20% used French barrels in the aging process, softening the wine, and balancing the powerful

On the banks of the River Duero, Toro is a zone characterized by very hot summers and a complex terroir dominated by boulders. This is Pintia land. The climate is extreme and continental, with Atlantic influences: rainfall ranges between 350 and 400mm, and temperatures rise to 40ºC at the end of July and fall to -11 ºC in winter. The specific climate conditions here—extreme cold in winter and heat in summer, plenty of sunshine, and low humidity—provide grapes of exceptional quality and, in the hands of these skilled winemakers, wines which defy the idea that wines from Toro should be rustic; these are elegant, beautifully structured, and long-lived.

2014 Pintia Toro
       Newsletter Price: $77.99
The changes made in Pintia where the wine now ferments in a mix of stainless steel and oak barrels are taming the rusticity of Toro. The elevage in 75% French Oak and 25% American also helps the powerful Tinta de Toro to show an elegant side. This vintage is incredibly aromatic, with fine grained tannins
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