Gregorio Martinez, Rioja Tinto ‘Finca’ Mazuelo 2014

Original price was: £17.00.Current price is: £13.50. (75cl)

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About the wine



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100% Mazuelo sourced from “La Dehesilla” parcel, at 700m, north facing. Planted in 1985. Destalking before pre-ferment cold maceration for 1 week @ 8°C in stainless steel vats, followed by fermentation with indigenous yeast at a maximum temp. of 16°C. Partial malo fermentation on the skins for 75 days without addition of sulphur; the remaining malolactic fermentation occurs in used French oak barrels where the wine matures for 8 months. Racked, lightly fined and bottled.

Tasting note

Medium intense cherry hue with purple rim, dense and well-defined legs. The nose is initially fresh and floral (lilacs, violets, hydrangeas) giving way to more earthy notes with hints of blackberry. With oxygenation the freshness becomes ever more obvious and with palma violets and hints of barrel ageing, all wrapped up in lactic and mineral overtones. With further oxygenation the fresh fruit comes through with balsamic undertones. In the mouth it is fresh and light, the silky tannins underpinning a good weight of fruit and balsamic flavours and hints of blackberries; it is very, very long thanks to its great acidity which gives it a very agreeable aftertaste.

About the producer

The current winery was constructed in time for the 2001 vintage, with grapes sourced from a 120 hectare estate, 40 hectares of which are under vine. The vineyards are located in the Iregua Valley, between the villages of Nalda, Sorzano and Entrena. Formerly meadows, the magnificent centenary oaks that can be found in the gardens are testament to the microclimate found here, close to the mountain ranges of Moncalvillo and Camero. The soils here are deep and consist predominantly of thick red clay and sedimentary sand, pebbles and sedimentary rock. The founder of the project was Gregorio Martínez, who started to purchase land around Sorzano, his wife’s hometown, in the late 1970’s/early 1980’s.

Currently managed by his descendants, the project changed dramatically following the appointment of head winemaker Ricardo Cantera back in 2009. Recently, they have embarked on making a new range, Finca Gregorio Martínez; which consists of fresh reds and whites as Ricardo likes to work with very low quantities of sulphites. At 700m of altitude and north-oriented, the vineyard suffers under extreme climate conditions. Harvest never starts before the second week of October and in some years it may not finish until November. All grapes are hand-harvested into small crates of 15kg. With up to five different clones grown on the estate, Tempranillo is the dominant grape while Mazuelo (Carignan) and Viura cover around two hectares each. A recently introduced range – Finca Gregorio Martínez includes a clean, vibrant white Viura; a vibrant, pale-coloured rosé made from Tempranillo and a Mazuelo aged in oak for 8 months plus two single-varietal reds crafted from Tempranillo and Mazuelo respectively. Rather unusually the malolactic fermentation takes place in the same tank with skins, resulting in wines that exude a natural freshness, expressing notes of wild herb. It is, in any case, quite a challenge to grow successfully late ripening varieties like Mazuelo in such a cool area.

Robert Parker Wine Advocate (

The 2014 Finca Mazuelo must be one of the very few varietal Mazuelos (or Cariñena) in Rioja. It's only 12.5% alcohol and has 6.2 grams of acidity, the characteristics of the grape, contained alcohol and good acidity. The vines were planted in 1980 and 1985, and the grapes fermented with natural yeasts in stainless steel vats. After malolactic, it was transferred to 225- and 400-liter oak casks, where it completed 13 months of maturation without racking. It has the rustic elegance of the variety with some notes of esparto grass and tree bark, lightly earthy and with aromas of ripe fruit. The palate is medium-bodied with a sharp edge, tasty flavors and a salty finish. It seemed to develop quite quickly in the glass, revealing a riper personality than in the first impression. 5,500 bottles were filled in April 2016. (Luis Gutiérrez) Points: 87 . Issue Date: 28/02/2018

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