Robert Parker 100
I don’t think I’ve ever tasted a wine more recently bottled than the 2014 Pingus, which was bottled in the morning and I tasted it that very same evening! Peter Sisseck compares this to the 1995, the first vintage ever produced, when he learned that when you have such perfect grapes, you should do very little to the wine. He’s been trying to replicate that first vintage, but there’s nothing you can do to force it, as it has to be the natural conditions of the vintage that bring those grapes. What he also learned with the 1995 was that with wines like that, you need a long and slow aging in oak; so for the 2014, he decided to do a little longer élevage-three winters in barrel-but in 100% used barrels, something he started in 2012. If it would have been new oak, as in the past, it would have been impossible to have such extended aging without marking the wine too much and possibly forever. The wine was quite tannic to start with, but it was racked every six months, and in that way they have managed to tame those tannins without getting the wine tired, as the aging itself was quite reductive. The nose is quite harmonious and open, but maybe not very expressive, a normal thing considering the extremely short bottle age it had (hours!), but it should gain precision in bottle. In instances like this, you have to guide yourself by the palate. And it’s precisely on the palate where you find that texture that is almost unique to Ribera del Duero when it’s as perfect as this. It’s very different from other zones, a velvety mouthfeel and a surrounding sensation of comfort, incredibly long. The tannins are ultra fine and with that subtle chalkiness of the limestone soils, which also added to the tastiness and the supple aftertaste. In short, I cannot think of a way of improving this Pingus other, than getting a magnum instead of a regular bottle! Congratulations, Peter Sisseck! 4,800 bottles were filled on January 16th of 2017, a slightly shorter production than the average, because part of the vines were hit by hail and didn’t make it into the final blend. Now stay tuned for 2015 and 2016.
Anticipated maturity: 2017-2024
Opaque purple. Dark berry compote and smoky Indian spices on the intensely perfumed nose, which is complicated by notes of incense and licorice pastille. Deep, sappy and broad on the palate, offering sweet flavors of black and blue fruit liqueur and spicecake. Gains energy as well as depth with aeration, finishing with powerful notes of candied dark berries, smooth, harmonious tannins and wonderful persistence.