Wine Advocate (Neal Martin): 92 $29! “The 2011 Monte Hiniesta comes from six parcels of 65-year-old vines that are cultivated bio-dynamically. The wine is raised in new and second year French barrels. It has a gorgeous, vivacious, ravishing bouquet of wild strawberry, maraschino cherry, and dark plum that is beautifully delineated. The palate is succulent on the entry with plush tannins, crisp acidity, and a compact, fruit-driven finish. The aftertaste is very long, with hints of spice and white pepper. This represents great value. Drink 2014-2020."
The Toro region is located in the northwest corner of Spain near the northeast corner of Portugal. Toro is relatively flat and is the last region in Spain where the Duero River passes before it enters Portugal and becomes the Douro River. Tinta de Toro, a clone of Tempranillo, is the native varietal in Toro. Since the mid 1990’s, many top winemakers from other regions have gone to Toro and begun to apply modern winemaking techniques to produce more attractive and polished wines to capture the distinct qualities of the Tinta de Toro varietal.
Bodegas Allegro con Spirito – Juan Antonio Fernandez had been acquiring vineyards from 1996 to 2000, which range in age from 30 to 100 years old. Finally, he started his bodega in 2000. His wife is in charge of the bodega (with lots of input from Juan Antonio), and Juan Antonio is in charge of the vineyards. All of the harvesting is done by hand in the early morning, and the grapes are brought to the bodega by mid morning. All movement of wine in the bodega is done by gravity with no mechanical pumping. The aging process in barrels is done in underground cellars below the bodega. Juan Antonio plays classical music from Bach and Handel in the wine cellar, because he believes it creates harmony as the wine ages.
Vineyard practice: Organic farming but without certification
Vine Age: more than 75 years
Yield: 0.8 tons per acre
Fermentation: 24 days in small stainless steel tanks with indigenous yeast
Aging: 12 months in new French allier and Troncais casks and 6 months in the bottle