Jeb Dunnuck 93
The 2016 Solanera is up with the finest vintages Ive tasted of this cuve (and Ive had most of them). A blend of 65 Monastrell, 20 Cabernet Sauvignon, and 15 Grenache, all from more limestone and higher elevation soils (and the Monastrell vines are 70 years old), it reveals a saturated purple color as well as full-bodied notes of blue fruits, cedarwood, spiced cherries, and peppery herbs. Its deep, rich, and textured, yet also balanced and beautifully pure. Its a steal at the price.~J.D.
Bodegas CastañoView all from Bodegas Castaño
The Castaño family are the original pioneers of the DO Yecla, beginning with Ramon Castaño. His conviction, perseverance and determination have all been necessary in achieving the highest quality wine with the most planted grape variety in the area: the Monastrell. Ramon's relationship with the world of wines dates back several generations with a family history of vine cultivation and winemakers. He built the new winery in 1950, modernizing and upgrading the technical methods by which the family vines were worked, and bottled the first wines in 1980. The gradual incorporation of his three sons into the family winery throughout the period of the 80s brought with it a new focus: to reinforce their presence in the national market and begin a new stage of expansion at the international level. With this, the Castaños continued to innovate and improve the reputation of Monastrell from Yecla in domestic and export markets.
The 500+ hectares of vineyards are grouped into four estates – Las Gruesas, El Espinal, Pozuelo and Arabí – with soils ranging from rocky limestone to clay. The primary grape is Monastrell followed in importance by Garnacha Tintorera and Cabernet Sauvignon, but there are also smaller plantings of Merlot, Syrah, Cabernet Franc, Garnacha, Macabeo, Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc. The impressive size of Bodegas Castaño allows for individualized and specialized fermentation, which in turn facilitates a more dynamic winemaking approach.
Bodegas Castaño is now recognized as one of the most respected wine producers in Southeastern Spain in recognition for their tradition and achievements in the use of the indigenous grape varieties. With a clear innovative spirit, the Castaño family has incorporated avant-garde technologies and the latest vinification systems to keep alive the legacy of their ancestors, an inherited passion for the deeply rooted Monastrell, the king variety in Yecla.