Guelbenzu Vierlas 2006 Front Label
Guelbenzu Vierlas 2006 Front Label

Guelbenzu Vierlas 2006

  • RP90
750ML / 13.5% ABV
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3.5 8 Ratings
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3.5 8 Ratings
750ML / 13.5% ABV

Winemaker Notes

In Vierlas, 10 miles upriver from Cascante and just into the region of Aragón, One hundred and thirty acres of vineyard located on a unique quaternary gravel deposit called La Lombana was acquired in its entirety through dozens of individual transactions during the late 1990s. A fruit-forward style is the objective from a blend predominated by estate Syrah, Tempranillo and Garnacha (with smaller percentages of Graciano and Petit Verdot), the wine being aged a scant three months in a mixture of new and used French oak. Spice and sweet fruit abound on the nose and palate, framed by Guelbenzu's reliable sense of fruit purity.

Critical Acclaim

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RP 90
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
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Guelbenzu

Bodegas Guelbenzu

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Bodegas Guelbenzu, Spain
In 1851, the Guelbenzu family of Cascante presented wine, olive oil and wheat at the First Universal Exposition in London's Prince Albert Pavilion (Paris 1855 being the second such world's fair). Don Miguel Guelbenzu had graduated in chemistry from the Sorbonne in Paris, and he returned home with the latest techniques in contemporary winemaking. Quality was the aim from the inception, and Gold Medals awarded the family's wines at the Exposition Universelle Bordeaux 1882, Navarra Exposition 1882 and Barcelona 1888. After Don Miguel, commercialization of wine under the family name declined. Don Miguel's great-grandchildren, eight siblings pooling their resources at that time, initiated renovation of the vineyards and winery in 1980. 1989 was the first vintage from the re-launched family vineyard estate.

98 acres of vines planted in 1980 to 50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Merlot and 30% Tempranillo, dispersed in numerous small plots encircling Cascante in the Queiles River Valley. The 7,600-foot Sierra del Moncayo rises just 20 miles to the south, its late-melting snows providing adequate moisture in the sub soils to withstand summer droughts. The vineyards lie between 1200 and 1800 feet, ripening the grapes in stages for an unhurried and perfectly timed harvest.

The modern winery maintains Don Miguel's original gravity-flow design from 1851, and is a gem of space utilization. Stainless fermentation tanks were inserted through the roof of building formerly devoted to olive oil production, while custom-made 10,000-litre Aillers oak uprights (for assemblage) fill the original cellar. Barriques are of various French oak types in which Guelbenzu's aged reds spend one full year prior to bottling, racked four times. The enologist, Yoseba Altuna, is a French educated native of Navarra with experience in a top Bordeaux Chateaux.

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Spanish red wine is known for being bold, heady, rustic and age-worthy, Spain is truly a one-of-a-kind wine-producing nation. A great majority of the country is hot, arid and drought-ridden, and since irrigation has only been recently introduced and (controversially) accepted, viticulture has sustained—and flourished—only through a great understanding of Spain’s particular conditions. Large spacing between vines allows each enough resources to survive and as a result, the country has the most acreage under vine compared to any other country, but is usually third in production.

Of the Spanish red wines, the most planted and respected grape variety is Tempranillo, the star of Spain’s Rioja and Ribera del Duero regions. Priorat specializes in bold red blends, Jumilla has gained global recognition for its single varietal Monastrell and Utiel-Requena has garnered recent attention for its reds made of Bobal.

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SOU191291_2006 Item# 98587

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