Robert Parker 96
“Marqués de Murrieta didn’t produce their top red in 2008, so I tasted the 2009 Castillo Ygay Gran Reserva Especial. In 2009, the final blend was Tempranillo with 19% Mazuelo (or Cariñena), one of the highest percentages of Mazuelo ever. The grapes are now sourced from the La Plana vineyard within the Ygay estate, one of the higher-altitude plots at 485 meters. The grapes fermented and aged separately, the Tempranillo in American oak barrels and the Mazuelo in French barriques for 26 months, given its power. It has that seriousness, character and somehow rusticity of the Mazuelo, austere, harmonious and still young. It has good depth and concentration, still young and lively with fine tannins and a backbone of freshness that lifts it up. It will develop for a very long time in bottle. This is a great classical Rioja for the long haul. 109,000 bottles and some larger formats were produced. It was bottled in October 2014. The prices are increasing but so is the quality. The following vintages will be 2010, 2011 and possibly 2012. I cannot wait to taste them…”
Anticipated maturity: 2018-2035
(fermented in stainless steel tanks and raised for 25 months in new American oak barriques) Deep ruby. Powerful, oak-accented red and blue fruit, cherry-cola, incense, pipe tobacco and coconut aromas show outstanding clarity and vivacity. Sweet, expansive, palate-staining black raspberry, cherry liqueur, vanilla, coconut and floral pastille flavors spread out and deepen steadily on the back half while maintaining energy. The smoky note reemerges on an impressively long, floral- and spice-accented finish that’s given shape by smooth, harmonious tannins.
Anticipated maturity: 2020-2030