Vega Sicilia Unico comes from the older vines on the estate and is made with the varieties of Tempranillo and more Cabernet Sauvignon than Merlot. Although it is old, the red wine maintains its liveliness thanks to its good acidity level compensated by solid alcohol content. It has an intense ripe cherry color, with the lively edge of a wine that is always at its best. The aroma prevails with hints of roast from the wood, and touches of hazelnut from its oxidative evolution from its years in the cask. It has generous tastes of old but clean wood, with dry tannins that are pleasantly embittered by the oak, together with the sensation of its light sweetness of its alcohol. It is a pedigree wine with a long, lasting taste.
"Having skipped over releasing a 2001 due to frost damage, the 2002 Unico is a result of a severe selection as attested by the label which shows that just 42,932 bottles were produced instead of 108,536 in 2000. It has an incredibly intense nose, much more linear and focused than the more flamboyant 2000, with scents of dark cherry, creme de cassis and a touch of honey and melted dark chocolate. The palate is medium-bodied with a slight grainy texture on the entry, a hint of cooked meat inflecting the layers of toasty dark berry fruit. It is very harmonious and perhaps at this juncture, edgier and grittier than the millennial Unico. It is less opulent and more structured than the 2000, but is a more cerebral wine. Drink 2020-2040+."
The Wine Advocate
"A selection of tinto fino from vines over 40 years old (some close to 90) blended with a small percentage of cabernet and merlot, this red comes from a careful selection of grapes in a very rainy harvest. And the results are brilliant. Here the aromas of chocolate and sweet spice blend with scents of black cherries and nuts; the wine is vibrant in acidity, but also powerful and sweet, like oranges dipped in chocolate."
Wine & Spirits
"Maturing now, this polished red offers cherry, herbal, tobacco and menthol flavors over firm, well-integrated tannins, with a long cedar and floral finish. Graceful and harmonious."
"Light yellow. Pit and orchard fruits on the highly fragrant nose and palate. At once fleshy and focused, with very good cut and an undercurrent of chalky minerality. Closes firm and long, with resonating spiciness and a refreshing note of bitter quinine. This wine should be even better in a few months, or even a year."
International Wine Cellar