Alvaro Palacios Priorat Les Terrasses Velles Vinyes 2017
WA93: I've always had a special interest in this Garnacha and Cariñena blend from Álvaro Palacios, and the current vintage is now the 2017 Les Terrasses Velles Vinyes. It's produced with grapes from 80 different vineyards in eight villages and therefore is a regional wine. 2017 was a warm and ripe year that produced powerful wines. This 2017 is 55% Garnacha with 44% Cariñena and a 1% pinch of white grapes that fermented in concrete and oak vats with indigenous yeasts and matured in barrique and oak vat for 11 months. This is the earthiest of the bottlings, and it has some rustic touches from the Cariñena, which gives it its personality. 2017 was their earliest harvest ever (the first time they ever started harvesting in August!). They used a little more new oak, yet the wine is not oaky or excessively ripe. There is no room for sweetness here, and the wine is clean, reflecting very healthy grapes and very elegant tannins, quite transparent, not dry, but rather juicy. Great Terrasses, a triumph over the conditions of the vintage. 126,000 bottles produced.
JS92: Enveloping black-cherry and blueberry aromas, but also notes of licorice and smoke. A bold and powerful Priorat with discreet oak and plenty of freshness. The tannins are supple and beautifully integrated, the finish generous and polished. Drink or hold.
WS91: This red is round and tender, yet has good depth. Cherry and berry flavors mingle with graphite, wild herb and blood orange notes. The structure is unobtrusive, but the wine shows focus and definition. Drink now through 2027.