Casa Castillo, Monastrell '17

Casa Castillo, Monastrell '17

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$36.00
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$36.00
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Ripe and juiiicy but balanced monastrell from Spain's sunny southeast.

Jumilla, Spain

José Maria Vicente is generally considered the best producer in Spain's hot, dry Jumilla region, where the gutsy monastrell variety is the grape of choice. In the early 90's he took over the bodega that was founded by his grandfather, and eventually uprooted cabernet vines in favour of the indigenous monastrell and garnacha. He dry farms the grapes in the stony soils there, and the winemaking is super simple, favouring cement tanks and old oak. His Pie Franco, from ungrafted vines, has cult status in Spain and a price to match, but he excels in making more affordable wines like this one as well. This is mostly monastrell with a splash of garnacha, fermented with some whole clusters for extra juiciness, and aged in a mix of concrete and big oak vats. This has just-ripe blueberry and blackberry fruit on the nose, with licorice spice, flowers, and Mediterranean herbs, and it's full-bodied without any of the gloopiness of most cheap Jumilla wine.