Torremorón, made in the small town of Quintanamanvirgo, is a great example of an artisanal, handcrafted wine rather than a commercial wine with no personality or soul. Just west of the villages of Anguix and La Horra and north of Pedrosa de Duero and Roa, Quintanamanvirgo is well situated in the north central area of Ribera. Many of Ribera's top bodegas farm vineyards here in the alluvial, sandy and clay-heavy soils in vineyard sites that are optimally located at high altitude. Torremorón is crafted in this small village (population: 94) whose people are very proud of their common wine heritage; everyone in town works for the winery. Quintanamanvirgo has two businesses: the bar and the winery. If you ever want to experience and taste the authentic personality of Ribera del Duero, head directly for this town and ask for Fernando de la Cal. When you meet him, ask him to show you his vineyards and his family cave where wine was made in the 1800's. Made with 1908-1930 year old vines, Torremorón is a genuine wine, one of the most pure expressions of Tempranillo that you'll come across.
WHAT MAKES THIS WINE UNIQUE? This is one of the most intense, pure and bright Tempranillo wines you'll ever taste. It is made from vines planted from 1914 - 1934, which produce grapes with unmistakably pronounced concentration and complexity! An incredible value, this wine has a consistent high quality every vintage.
RATING HISTORY: 2014 90Vinous; 2013 89RP; 2012 89RP & IWC; 2011 92RP; 2006 90RP; 2005 90RP
GRAPE: 100% Tempranillo (Tinto Fino). Vines planted from 1914-1934. Tended in sandy and limestone soil at 824 m (2,703 ft) elevation
PAIRING SUGGESTIONS: Here, the fresh, red berried, mineral character of Ribera shows through, with a slightly spicy, minty note. This is one of only a few Ribera wines where you can taste the “cut” and chewy, juicy Tempranillo flavors unburdened by oak. A crisp fruited wine with structure and substance, it's neither light nor unduly heavy. This would pair well with Thai beef salad, marinated Korean BBQ pork, Peking duck and meat or chicken dishes with a piquant play of spices.
VINIFICATION AND AGEING: The grapes are picked manually during the cool night hours. After de-stemming and crush, the must (crushed grapes and juice) is macerated for three days on the skins in stainless steel tank at cool temperature (10C or 50F). After fermentation, the wine is macerated for an additional 20 days to extract additional flavor and color from the skins. The wine is aged in stainless steel tanks for three months before filtration and bottling.
PRODUCTION: 12,000 cases
LOCATION, SOIL, CLIMATE: Vineyards are close to the town of Quintanamanvirgo at an elevation of 824 meters (2,703 ft.) within the north central part of Ribera del Duero, within the province of Burgos (Zone 2). The vineyard soil is composed of sand with a percentage of clay and limestone in the subsoil. This area has a “classic” Continental climate. The average temperature from April-October is 59.8F, with hot days and cool nights during the growing season. The moderately low annual rainfall (17.9 in.) provides a longer ripening period which results in greater complexity and aromatic intensity in the grapes. The Burgos area of Ribera del Duero is situated at a higher altitude and has a cooler climate than either the Rueda or Toro regions to the west. The wines from Ribera's Burgos area are usually darker, more concentrated and more aromatic than wines from the western Valladolid area of Ribera del Duero.
TASTING NOTES: Fresh black and blue fruit aromas are lifted and sharpened by a peppey note and a suggestion of smoky minerals. Vibrant and focused on the palate, offering intense boysenberry and cassis flavos that put on weight with aeration. Seamless and expressive, with no rough edges and a long, gently tannic finish that echoes the blueberry note.
All photos: Friederike Paetzold