Teso la Monja Alabaster 2009
Critical AcclaimAll Vintages
Teso La Monja was founded in 2007 by Marcos and Miguel Angel Eguren, the fourth winemaking generation of the Eguren family from San Vicente de la Sonsierra in Rioja Alavesa. As they have been growing Tempranillo in Rioja Alavesa since the late 1800’s, the Eguren family fell in love with D.O. Toro when they first travelled there with Jorge Ordóñez, seduced by the region’s original clone of Tempranillo and ungrafted vines.
Jorge Ordóñez and the Eguren family were the original founders of Bodegas Numanthia, which was responsible, along with their current work, for the resurrection of D.O. Toro as one of Spain’s preeminent wine regions. After the sale of Numanthia in 2007, the Eguren family founded Teso La Monja as a new challenge for the family – finding the elegance in the wines of Toro.
The family selected vineyards in the northernmost part of D.O. Toro that have a much higher proportion of rounded stones than what is typical. This produces extremely silky, elegant wines. The winemaker, Marcos Eguren, is considered by many to be the finest winemaker in Spain. His son, Eduardo Eguren, the fifth generation, also works as the winemaker at Teso La Monja.
Known for its bold, heady, rustic and age-worthy red wines, 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.
Most planted and respected 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.