Murrieta Ygay Gran Reserva Especial
$194.95 + GST
#1 Wine Spectator Top 100 of 2020
The Cebrián-Sagarriga family, who in 1983 acquired the Marqués de Murrieta winery, established in 1852, has a distinct winemaking philosophy that is founded in the pursuit of quality and excellence through tradition and innovation.
Only the finest vintages from the 741-acre Ygay Estate are used to make Castillo Ygay. This Gran Reserva Especial is made from tempranillo and mazuelo from vineyards located at 485 meters above sea level. Limited in production and sought after all over the world, it is the worthy choice for the winery’s emblematic Castillo Ygay label.
The grapes are manually harvested from an 80-year-old single-vineyard called La Plana, located at the highest peak within the Ygay Estate which surrounds the winery in the southern point of the Rioja Alta wine subzone. Fermentation takes around two weeks, during which we pump over and punch down the cap in order to extract aromas and poliphenols slowly and naturally. The tempranillo was harvested on October 6th and the mazuelo on October 21st.
Marvelous aromas of crushed berries, tobacco, cedar and mushrooms. Some dried cheese. Then turns to flowers. Very complex. Full and intense with fantastic depth and power. It goes on for minutes. It is a wine that exudes tradition but gives a sense of modernity with precise winemaking. Two years in oak, one in concrete and three or four in bottle. Drink on release and age onwards.
I had very high expectations for the 2010 Castillo Ygay Gran Reserva Especial, and the wine delivered as expected. 2010 was one of the finest vintages in Rioja in recent years, and this blend of Tempranillo with 15% Mazuelo (Cariñena) has to be one of the finest modern day Castillo de Ygays. The grapes come from a plot planted in 1966 at 485 meters in altitude, the highest in the estate, and the vines yielded 3,500 kilos per hectare. The two varieties fermented separately in stainless steel for 11 days, and the wine spent 26 months in a mixture of American and French oak barrels. I tasted the 2009 next to this 2010, and I had also had a bottle two nights before.
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