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Les Aubaguetes 2015

Les Aubaguetes

2015
Characterised by the shade
94+
PARKER
97
SUCKLING

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£282.65

/ 0.75 L btl
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Spec sheet

TypeRed wine
Region
Grapes
Producer
AllergensContains sulfites
Alcohol contenti14.5%
Production1,500 - 2,500 bottles

The wine

Les Aubaguetes is one of the wines of a particular place (vinos de paraje) made by Álvaro Palacios, and perhaps the most traditional Priorat of all those he produces. A very special wine that combines the Mediterranean character of Bellmunt with the freshness of a shady vineyard. Another top-range wine, made predominantly from Garnacha and Cariñena, with some very seductive floral aromas and pure, intense fruit.

This wine’s name is derived from the Catalan word obagues ('in the shade') and its fruit was used in the blend of the Les Terrasses wine until it began to have its own label. 2015 was its first vintage.

What does this wine taste like?

Les Aubaguetes reveals a very striking aromatic complexity, starting off with the citrusy notes typical of the Garnacha, ripe forest fruits and a mineral tinge, to which balsamic hints of Mediterranean herbs and eucalyptus are soon added. Floral touches and some aniseed and liquorice notes are refreshing on its nose, endowing it with subtlety and refinement.

On the palate it’s intense, with earthy but pleasant tannins, refined and robust at the same time. It proves juicy and balanced, turning the profundity of the old vines and the Priorat’s harshness into flavours of great purity.

A very long finish, almost saline.

Drinking and storing

It should be drunk from a large-capacity wine glass at a temperature of about 16 ºC. A light decanting will help to enhance its expressive capability.

After its fifth year in bottle it will reach its full expression, remaining in optimum condition until 10-12 years after its vintage year.

Food pairing

Grilled red meats, venison and other game make perfect partners.

caza
Game
carnes-rojas
Red meat
brasa
Roast meats

Ratings and awards

202099 SK
201997 PK97 PN98 SK
201897+ PK96 PN96 SK
201795+ PK97 PN97 SK
201695-96 PK95 PN97 SK
201594+ PK97 SK
PK: ParkerPN: PeñínSK: Suckling

Wine critics reviewsReviews by Parker

The 2019 Les Aubaguetes comes from a 1.55-hectare plot of old vines in the process of being classified as "gran vinya classificada," and in 2019, the wine is a blend of 74% Garnacha, 25% Cariñena and 1% white grapes, Garnacha Blanca and Macabeo. It fermented in oak vats with indigenous yeasts and matured in oak casks for 14 months. This is probably the most backward of the 2019s, perhaps a little different from the rest of the 2019s, as the percentage of Cariñena here is more or less the same as in previous years, while in the other wines it tends to be quite a bit lower. The Cariñena was not as affected by the heat as the others because there is a lot of shadow (that's what the wine's name means in the Catalan language); the sun disappears at 10 in the morning (!), and the yields were similar to previous years. So, there's something darker and earthier here, a wine more marked by Cariñena and the very dark slate from the soils. There are some grainy tannins, again a different texture from the rest of 2019s. But again, there is great balance, and it's perhaps the more traditional Priorat in the range. 2,543 bottles were filled in May 2021.

— Luis Gutiérrez (30/07/2021)Robert Parker Wine Advocate Vintage 2019 - 97 PARKER

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Winemaking

100% destemmed and a gentle pressing. Fermentation with native yeasts in oak vats with stirrings. Spontaneous malolactic also in wood. 40-55 days of maceration and ageing in oak barrels of different sizes for 14-18 months.

Vinification materialWood
Ageing periodBetween 14 and 18 months
Type of woodFrench oak

Vineyards

Les Aubaguetes

Estate-owned vineyard giving the wine its name, planted at the beginning of the 20th Century (1901). 1.79 hectares in size, lying on a steep, shady slope facing northwards in Bellmunt del Priorat. Situated at an altitude of 230-288 metres, the Garnacha and Cariñena (mainly) vines grow surrounded by holm oaks and pine groves. The sunshine received is much less than in other vineyards (the sun disappears at 10 o’clock in the morning) and full ripeness is slower. Yields are extremely low (12.6 hl/ha), which results in the grapes having an exceptional concentration.

This stunning slate-strewn vineyard is in the process of being ranked as a Gran Vinya Classificada (equivalent to a grand cru), the highest distinction a wine-producing estate can aspire to in the Priorat QDO.

OrientationNorth
Surface area1.79 hectares
Altitude288.00 meters

The winery

Álvaro Palacios

Álvaro Palacios

Álvaro Palacios came to the Priorat in 1989, to the town of Gratallops to be precise, following the lead of a group of local producers fully intending to pass on through their wines all the character of this land, full of its own brightness, with the shining Mediterranean sun, the gleaming slate in rocky crags, and brightly-coloured fennel in the olive groves. This is mystic, spiritual country tracing back its past to the Carthusian monks, who worked at cultivating vines...

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