The stunning Finca Villacreces estate is located in Quintanilla de Onesimo on the...
'golden mile', in the heart of Ribera del Duero DO. The 155 hectare property is bordered by the River Duero to the north and by the vineyards of Vega Sicilia to the west. It was purchased by Lalo Antón of Izadi in 2003 to add further scope to their wine portfolio. The vineyards are now farmed organically, with canopy management and natural treatments used instead of artificial chemicals. As expected, Tempranillo is the mainstay of the vineyards, with Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon also planted.
The vineyards here are a mixture of soils: sandy, gravel, shingle and quartz. Each soil type contributes to different flavours in the fruit as well as to very low yields of around just three tonnes per hectare. The vineyards are planted with about 86% Tempranillo (mostly on the sandy vineyards, which give an attractive fleshiness to the wines), 4% Merlot and 10% Cabernet Sauvignon (mostly on the quartz and shingle, giving more mineral complexity). Organic practices are used as much as possible and the close proximity of the river helps protect against frost. The vineyards lie at 710 metres above sea level and are planted with a density of 2,200 vines per hectare.
Budbreak arrived early in the spring. During the flowering stage, a change in weather conditions brought rain and wind and produced significant coulure which meant a 30% reduction in production. The summer was very dry and warm, helping the remaining grapes to ripen fully. The vintage started quite early, with ideal conditions for harvesting high-quality grapes.
Fruit was handpicked into 15 kilogram crates in the second and third weeks of October. The three varieties were fermented separately in small stainless-steel tanks with 25% undergoing malolactic fermentation in new French oak barrels. The wines were then aged separately in French oak (Taransaud and Darnajou) for a period of 14 months after which the final blend was assembled and bottled.
This wine is inky purple in colour with an expressive bouquet of espresso, toasted bread, graphite, wild blueberries, and blackberry liqueur. This is followed by a full-bodied, full-flavoured, plush wine with layers of spicy black fruit. Well balanced, with lingering hints of smoke.
|Grape varieties||86% Tempranillo
10% Cabernet Sauvignon
|Region||Ribera del Duero, Castilla y León|
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