2015 Bodegas Alto Moncayo Veraton

Year: 2015
Appellation: Campo de Borja
Country: Spain
Wine Spectator: 92
Wine Advocate: 91
James Suckling: 93
Jeb Dunnuck: 93
Red Wine
Alcohol by Volume: 15.5%
Price :
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"Round and juicy, this lively red shows ripe flavors of kirsch and mulled plum, with chocolate and licorice accents. Heady but not heavy, with bright acidity and spicy and floral notes on the finish. Drink now through 2022. 6,000 cases made. -T.M" (WS)
"From vines planted in the 1970s and 1980s, the entry-level 2015 Veratón is pure Garnacha fermented in stainless steel tanks with neutral yeasts and aged in mostly new (and 20% used) French and American oak barrels for 16 months. It's a good representation of the house style, with a heady and ripe nose, generous spice and smoke and a warm finish. It's full-bodied, concentrated and very balsamic but is also the more balanced and approachable of the offerings here. The fruit is black, and there are plenty of sweet spices and smoke. The palate is full-bodied, dense and concentrated, with pungent and generously oaked flavors. As Parker said, it is not for consumers looking for shy, restrained and delicate wines; it's clearly for fans of the style. 112,800 bottles produced. It was bottled in July 2017.

Alto Moncayo produces ripe and concentrated wines mostly from old-vine Garnacha with the help of Australian consultant Chris Ringland. The wines are produced in a warm, powerful and oaky way, following the style of Ringland. 2015 was a warm and dry vintage in the Campo de Borja zone, and the wines show high ripeness. They told me they want to hold onto their top bottling, Aquilón, from 2015, as it's a very powerful vintage and needs to have some more time in bottle; they are planning to sell it after one more year in bottle, so I didn't get to taste it. The Alto Moncayo showed very raw and oaky, so I'm sure the Aquilón is too young now." (WA)

"At once dark and fragrant with a ton of black fruit, but a ton more than that, too. This concentrated garnacha has a lot of drive and carries its tannic power with confidence. Long finish that is simultaneously bold and subtle. Drink or hold." (JS)

"The 2015 Alto Moncayo Veraton is the entry level effort yet offers serious bang for the buck. Made from 100% Garnacha from vineyards in Tabuenca and aged in a mix of French and American oak, it gives up terrific notes of blackberries, currants, toasted spices and dried flowers. Possessing beautiful purity of fruit, a full, layered mid-palate, integrated oak, and a great finish, it’s a smoking good Grenache to enjoy over the coming 4-5 years." (JD)

2004 Alto Moncayo Rating:93
2005 Alto Moncayo Rating:93
2006 Alto Moncayo Rating:93
2007 Alto Moncayo Rating:92
2009 Alto Moncayo Rating:92
2010 Alto Moncayo Rating:92
2011 Alto Moncayo Rating:92
2012 Alto Moncayo Rating:93
2013 Alto Moncayo Rating:92
2014 Alto Moncayo Rating:91

Winery Notes:
Joint venture of Jose Miguel San Martin, Jorge Ordonez, Bodegas Borsao and Dan Phillips in conjunction with Chris Ringland. Winery is located in the town of Bulbuente. Grapes are sourced from 62 hectares (153.2 acres) of old clone Garnacha vines planted on hillside vineyards oriented to the southwest. A few of the vineyards are terraced. All the vines are vaso trained. The vineyards are located in 3 villages. Very unique soils of red clay (indicative of being rich in iron) mixed with red slate. Because of its hillside location the soils are very poor in organic matter and shallow. A few sites have calcareous soils. Continental climate with hot summers and cold winters. Nighttime during the summer brings cool temperatures to moderate the growing season. There is scant rainfall.

Inky purple. A heady bouquet evokes ripe red berries, anise, mocha and pungent fresh flowers. Supple and sweet on entry, then more structured in the middle, offering deep, mineral-accented dried strawberry and cherry liqueur flavors. Takes a spicy turn on the long, sappy finish, which echoes the pure red berry qualities.