2016 Bodegas Alión, Ribera del Duero, Spain

2016 Bodegas Alión, Ribera del Duero, Spain

Product: 20161130429
Prices start from £87.00 per bottle (75cl). Buying options
2016 Bodegas Alión, Ribera del Duero, Spain

Description

Fine and fresh with sweet red fruit on the nose, 2016 Alion is really impressive. A lovely intensity comes through in waves on the palate alongside a savoury, toasty element and a focused core. This wine has that hedonistic element to it again that appears in a number of the wines in this release; it is exuberant and confident with sweet strawberry elements at first but then a core of redcurrant fruit draws through towards a twist of cured jamón on the finish. The tannins are, once again, incredible; they are ultra-fine and glide on the palate, and the length is astonishing. Drink 2021-2038.
Catriona Felstead MW, Spain Buyer 
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Critics reviews

Wine Advocate95+/100
James Suckling96+/100
Wine Advocate95+/100
The highly anticipated 2016 Alión spent 12 months in oak barrels, 80% of them new and built mainly with French oak but with some 5% American oak, and some 10% of the volume matured in 15,000-liter concrete vats. It hits the scale at 15% alcohol and has moderate acidity, showing ripe black fruit and a creamy texture. 2016 has to be one of the freshest and most elegant vintages of Alión, a year with depth, freshness and terrific balance. Same as they do in Pintia, they are finding ways to lower the impact of the oak in the wine; here, they used concrete, and the wine shows more primary and floral aromas and is nicely textured and with fine tannins.
Luis Gutiérrez, The Wine Advocate (December 2019 )

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James Suckling96+/100
A very savory and succulent Alion with so much complexity of flavor with berries, chocolate and dried meat. Some cedar, too. Full body. Vertical and very long. Purity of fruit and tannins to this wine. Needs two or three years to soften. Release in 2020. Better after 2022.
James Suckling (December 2019)

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About this WINE

Bodegas Alion

Bodegas Alion

Bodegas Alión was formed in 1986, owned by but run separately to its neighbour, the great Vega Sicilia.

This 85-hectare wine estate was founded by the Álvarez family (who also own the Toro estate Bodegas Pintia) to provide a modern expression of Ribera del Duero. The wine is made with 35 hectares around the winery, as well as a further 50 hectares dedicated to Alión within the historic Vega Sicilia vineyards.


Unlike Vega Sicilia, where we find a merging of traditional and modern winemaking techniques, Alión is made using state-of-the-art equipment. Forward and uncompromising, these are wines with impressive frames and show an alternative side of Tinto Fino (Tempranillo).

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Ribera del Duero

Ribera del Duero

In the last 30 years, Ribera del Duero has risen up to challenge Rioja for the crown of Spain's greatest wine region. Once known only as the home of Vega Sicilia it now boasts numerous bodegas of outstanding quality, from Hacienda Monasterio to Cillar de Silos. The region was granted its DO status in 1982, and today has over 200 wineries and more than 20,000 hectares of vines.

In the last 30 years, Ribera del Duero has emerged from almost nowhere to challenge Rioja for the crown of Spain's greatest wine region. Once known only as the home of Vega Sicilia it now boasts numerous bodegas of outstanding quality like Cillar de Silos, Alión and Hacienda Monasterio. Ribera del Duero was granted its DO status in 1982, at a time when only nine bodegas were operating there, yet today it has over 200 wineries and more than 20,000 hectares of vines. Most of Ribera del Duero's production is red, with only a modest quantity of rosado produced. No white wines are allowed under the DO.

Ribera del Duero owes its success to a combination of factors: firstly, its terroir of schistous sub-soil bears remarkable similarity to other famous winemaking regions such as the Douro and Priorat. Secondly, its microclimate, with its high altitude, hot days and cool nights (a phenomenon known as “diurnal variation”), ensures ripeness while preserving the vivacity of the fruit, aromatic flavours and refreshing acidity.

Thirdly, it has been blessed with an exceptional native grape, Tempranillo (also known as Tinto del País or Tinto Fino). This yields superb, complex red wines that are delicious when young but which also have the capacity to age into magnificent Gran Reservas. Finally, the immense influence of its winemakers has been key – historically, of course, Vega Sicilia, but more recently Peter Sisseck (Hacienda Monasterio) and the indefatigable Aragón family of Cillar de Silos.

The same DO rules govern Ribera's barrel-aged styles as for Rioja: Crianzas are aged for two years before release with at least a year in oak barrels; Reservas must be three years old with at least a year spent in oak; and, finally, Gran Reservas must be five years old before going on sale, with two years spent in barrel. The young (joven) unoaked red wines, called Roble, tend to boast a moreish, vibrant, bramble fruit while the best oak-aged styles of Crianza, Reserva and Gran Reserva show intense, generous fruit, overlaid with notes of vanilla and sweet spice, and wrapped up in polished, elegant tannins.

Recommended producers: Vega Sicilia (including Alión), Cillar de Silos, Hacienda Monasterio

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Tempranillo/Tinto Fino

Tempranillo/Tinto Fino

A high quality red wine grape that is grown all over Spain except in the hot South - it is known as Tinto Fino in Ribera del Duero, Cencibel in La Mancha and Valdepenas and Ull de Llebre in Catalonia. Its spiritual home is in Rioja and Navarra where it constitutes around 70% of most red blends.

Tempranillo-based wines tend to have a spicy, herbal, tobacco-like character accompanied by ripe strawberry and red cherry fruits. It produces fresh, vibrantly fruit driven "jovenes" meant for drinking young. However Tempranillo really comes into its own when oak aged, as with the top Riojas  where its flavours seem to harmonise perfectly with both French and American oak, producing rich, powerful and concentrated wines which can be extraordinarily long-lived.

In Ribera del Duero it generally sees less oak - the exception being Vega Sicilia where it is blended with Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot and then aged for an astonishing 7 years in oak and is unquestionably one of the world`s greatest wines.

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