Rapolao 2019 96WA
$74.99 on 4+ mix & match ok (code 4saves5)
Grapes: 85% Mencia, 10% Alicante and 5% other varieties
Vineyard: 3.5 hectares, gently sloping hillside, soils are clay, rich in organic matter, 1,900ft asl.
Vine Age: 100+ years old
One of the legendary vineyards in Valtuille (shared by 20 producers), from a 3.5 hectare plot, it is one of the coolest parajes in Valtuille and gets the sun an hour after the rest of the village vineyards.
96 pts Robert Parker Wine Advocate (Luis Gutierrez)
The 2019 Valtuille El Rapolao, now a Vino de Paraje, fermented with 100% full clusters with a long maceration and matured in well-seasoned, neutral 500-liter oak barrels (which might be eight years old now), the modus operandi for all of the single-vineyard reds. It's perfumed and heady, as it comes from a plot that also has some fruit trees, in a v-shape, planted along with some 8% Malvasía grapes that have been added since 2018 and have given it finesse. It's more exuberant on the nose, something that seems to define this wine that is quite unique and different from its siblings. It's medium-bodied with around 13% alcohol; winemaker César Márquez feels that when these wines are riper than 13.5% they are too rustic. 1,200 bottles produced. It was bottled in December 2020.