Viñedos de Sonsierra – Viñedos Singulares
La Rioja Alta – Spain
This is a very new project from Tim Atkin MW’s 2022, 2021 & 2019 Cooperative of the Year, Bodegas Sonsierra. Uniquely, under the new “Viñedos Singulares” (Single Vineyard) classification, Bodegas Sonsierra boasts nine of these special designation vineyards, more than any other Rioja producer. They amplified this in 2020 with the creation of an entirely separate new winery for their Viñedos Singulares wines, an investment permitting winemaking which means the highest possible standards for these limited-supply, revered wines.
Viñedo Singular ‘El Manao’ 2017
The name of the vineyard, ‘El Manao’, is a local word referring to an area of natural springs on the banks of the River Ebro, which covers just 0.24 hectares. The careful selection and low yield from this vineyard meant that only 576 bottles have been released globally.
Tim Atkin: 95 points
Decanter: 91 points
Jancis Robinson: 17.5 points
Viñedo Singular ‘El Rincón de los Galos’ 2017
100% of the grapes are handpicked from Tempranillo vines grown in an area known as ‘El Rincón de los Galos’. The careful selection and low yield from this vineyard meant that only 2,016 bottles have been released worldwide.
Tim Atkin: 96 points
Decanter: 95 points
Jancis Robinson: 17.5 points
Campania – Italy
Situated in Lapio city, near Avellino, Tenuta Scuotto is a family-run winery who as Wine Spectator has recognised is pushing the boundaries of Fiano. Tenuta Scuotto strives to produce wines that fully express the characteristics of the area in which they are born at the same time as conveying their unique identity. Their desire and primary goal is to produce wines that are a clear expression of the territory and their passion for viticulture. They use an integrated approach to farming and work with reduced yields, producing highly complex and concentrated wines as a result. In addition to their two-time Gambero Rosso Tre Bicchieri winning Fiano di Avellino DOCG, highlights from their range are the two flagship wines:
Oi Nì is an extraordinary Fiano which draws on the winemaking techniques and style of Alsace whites, with Wine Spectator praising that it is ‘pushing the boundaries of Fiano’. It is fermented in barrel using indigenous yeasts before 12 months of lees ageing, before bottling without fining or filtration, resulting in a truly unique style of Fiano.
A 100% Aglianico di Taurasi, which undergoes an extended ageing period of 12 months in barrel and 36 months in bottle before release for an elegant and velvety texture. Bottled without filtration, it is full-bodied and highly age worthy.
Paso Robles, California – USA
Patrimony is the Cabernet Sauvignon-focused creation of brothers Georges Daou and Daniel Daou, proprietors of DAOU Vineyards & Winery. Patrimony is rooted in the DAOU mountain’s unmatched alchemy of soil, aspect and climate, and realised through meticulous vinification of the estate’s noble vineyard rows. The phenolics produced here are known to be among the highest in the world, fostering an immensity of colour, depth and structure that is only enhanced by the rigorous viticulture required to make Patrimony.
Caves de Lions 2019
An outstanding blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc that has already wowed critics. Patrimony fruit undergoes state-of-the-art optical sorting to ensure absolute flavour integrity. Fermentation takes place exclusively with wild yeasts cultured from DAOU Mountain, imbuing the wine with native texture and character. The wine is made entirely from free-run juice. Maturation takes place for 30 months in rare French oak barrels prized for their fine grain and distinctive elegance, before further ageing in bottle for one year.
Wine Advocate: 99 points
Jeb Dunnuck: 96-98 points