Wednesday, July 31, 2019

The Face Of Toro Tempranillo

"Strength, nerve and courage" is on the label of the Matsu wines from Spain's Toro region.  Matsu means "wait" in Japanese, says the winery.  It's a tribute to "all the viticulturists who have been working" - and waiting - "in the vineyards for generations."   The label also features images of real life viticulturists, to a somewhat startling effect.

D.O. Toro has a dry climate, extreme temperatures and 100-year-old vines which combine to make for some pretty bold juice.  Matsu's 2015 El Viejo is made from Tinta de Toro grapes.  That's what they call Tempranillo in Toro.  The wine was vinified in concrete tanks and aged in new French oak barrels for 16 months.  Alcohol tips 15% abv and the sticker price is $47. 

This wine's color is medium-dark ruby in the glass.  The nose displays huge black fruit - berries and plums - with savory leather, smoke and cigar box notes.  On the palate comes blackberries and sweet oak tones.  The tannins provide great structure, begging for a pairing with beef.

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