Condado de Haza is located in the province of Burgos, known for its rocky soils and cooler climate. It has a different soil type and higher elevation than its sister property in Pesquera. And where Pesquera is a fine, compact and bloody wine, Condado de Haza is typically plump, textural and with a more rugged structure. The microclimate here is tempered by its proximity to the river. Hot days drive the ripeness, while the cold nights maintain high acidity, resulting in fleshy wines that nonetheless remain fresh and sappy.
Always a textural and complex Tempranillo, the 2015 is showing great class and poise. Simply delicious drinking with red and blue fruits, hints of milk chocolate and a wonderful sappy, spicy (garrigue like!) complexity on the fresh spicy finish. The winemaking largely mimics the Pesquera; late harvesting by hand, natural ferment, vinification by parcel and 18 months in barrique, bottled unfiltered. It is fabulously delicious now, yet will reward three-seven years in the cellar.
Alejandro Fernádez is a poster child for the rise and rise of the ‘New Spain’. A family breadwinner from the age of 13, he has gone on to become one of the greats of modern Spanish viticulture and a pioneer in both Ribera and with the Tempranillo grape. Pesquera was the first Estate he established and the one that launched his fame. Tinto Pesquera is made with a hybrid traditional/modern methodology and is aged a minimum of 18 months in oak, with selected Reservas and Grand Reservas remaining in barrel for at least 24 months or longer. The Pesquera township and surrounds has a firmly continental climate: the long sunny days ensure that the grapes attain good ripeness levels, while the cool nights extend the growing season and lend the wines a freshness and elegance that has long been a Pesquera trademark. The style today balances the concentration and complexity of low yields and minimal handling, with the classic freshness of the region.
Unlike the other legendary Estate Vega Sicilia, Pesquera and Condado de Haza are (see below) made almost entirely from the local Tinta del Pais – the local name given to Ribera’s own thick-skinned, wilder mutation of Tempranillo. These are a pleasure to drink, and totally unlike the style of many of Ribera’s flashy, high-octane alta expresión wines that have proliferated in Pesquera’s slipstream. In this respect, the wines remain some of the very finest of their genre, part of a select group of deliciously thought-provoking and timeless masterpieces. They are not always ‘technically perfect’ but they are always deliciously unique.
Aromas of blackcurrants, crushed violets, rosemary and thyme. Full body, good concentration and silky tannins with a pure and vivid finish. Drink or hold.
Cherry, red plum and currant flavors are ripe and juicy in this bright red, supported by firm tannins and citrusy acidity that give way to a vanilla- and floral-accented finish. Offers a fresh fruit core, with solid structure.