Wine Spectator Top 100 of 2016! #52
Wine Spectator Smart Buy!
91WS - "A thick texture carries plum tart, orange peel, toasted vanilla and anise flavors in this ripe version, balanced by juicy acidity. The spicy, berry-scented finish is long and pure. Drink now through 2023." - Wine Spectator, 91 points!
75% Garnacha, 20% Tempranillo and 5% Mazuelo.
If anyone embodies the promise and spirit of "The New Spain", it is Alvaro Palacios. Born into a wine family in Rioja, he now makes wine in three different appellations: Priorat, Bierzo, and his hometown of Alfaro in Eastern Rioja. Alvaro's flagship Priorat wine, L'Ermita, is one of the highest rated wines to come out of Spain, and he was voted "Winemaker of the Year" in the 2008 edition of the Wine Report.
Following his great successes in Priorat and Bierzo during the 1990s, and the death of his father in 2000, Palacios assumed responsibility for the family's property and winery in Rioja, Palacios Remondo.
DOC Rioja is known for native grape varieties Tempranillo, Garnacha Tinta and Viura, among other varieties used primarily for blending. The Palacios Remondo Estate and vineyards are located at high elevations in the eastern part of the region. Alvaro's passion for staying true to the tradition of the land inspires him to make wines that are expressive and authentic to the Eastern Rioja region. Alvaro uses Garnacha, which thrives in Rioja Baia, as the dominant grape in his red wine blends. This makes for more full-bodied wines with aromas of Mediterranean herbs, cherries and nectarines, and flavors of mixed berries and blood oranges on the palate.
Palacios is deeply committed to organic viticulture and natural winemaking practices, such as use of organic fertilizers in the stone-covered, clay soils. All wines are unfiltered and clarified only with egg whites, no exogenous yeasts or commercial compounds are added to the wines and sulfites are kept to minimum levels. Total respect for his vineyard and its surrounding environment results in wines – La Montesa, Propiedad, Plácet Valtomelloso and La Vendimia – that express the true nature of the estate's soils.
At an altitude of 1,800 feet, the Palacios Remondo vineyards are grown at some of the highest points within all of Rioja. The average age of the vines is twenty-four years. The soil is comprised of sediments that stem from the quaternary era, consisting of clay and a stony-calcareous subsoil covered in gravel, similar to that of Chateauneuf du Pape. Very low in organic material and with a moderated basic pH, the soil type is perfect for growing high quality fruit. The vines are narrowly spaced, pruned under a double cordon de royat style, farmed organically and very rarely irrigated. By green harvesting and dropping almost 50% of their fruit, Palacios Remondo ensured only the highest quality fruit was picked during harvest, which took place between the 20th of September and 25th of October.