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BODEGAS TORO ALBALá

Region: Andalucía
Appellation: D.O. Montilla-Moriles
City: Aguilar de la Frontera
Winery Website: www.toroalbala.com
Winery GPS Coordinates: 37° 30.65', -4°39.08'

OVERVIEW

Founded in 1844, occupying Aguilar de la Frontera's former power station in 1922. In 1970 Toro Albalá was the first Montilla producer to commercialize bottled dessert Pedro Ximénez and remains the world's only specialist in 100% Vintage PX. Impeccable and authentic Fino, Amontillado and Oloroso containing only the natural alcohol from fermentation are produced by the classic solera method.

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HISTORY

This prestigious family estate was founded in 1844 in Aguilar de la Frontera by the great-grandfather of current owner Antonio Sánchez. In 1922 José María Toro Albalá moved the facilities to the current location in Aguilar’s old power station, introducing updated technologies and establishing Toro Albalá as Montilla’s quality leader. In 1970, Toro Albalá became the first Montilla producer to bottle Dessert Pedro Ximénez—a product historically sold in bulk to producers and shippers in D.O. Jerez-Xérès-Sherry for aging and blending. Toro Albalá remains the world’s only specialist in the commercialization of 100% Vintage Dessert PX, their Gran Reserva aged a minimum of 25 years in barrel before release.

Bodegas Toro Albalá owns significant vineyard acreage in Aguilar de la Frontera and Moriles, exclusively Pedro Ximénez vines planted in chalky-white albariza soils. Grapes from older head-pruned vines are destined to the meticulous production of vintage dessert wines, whereas newer wire-trained vineyards provide fresher fruit with brighter acids for the production of impeccably clean, complex and smooth Fino, Amontillado and Oloroso containing only the natural alcohol from fermentation.

Special Reserve Vintages on Offer: http://classicalwines.com/Wineries/winery_17/gen130912.pdf

Great New 2015 Releases! http://classicalwines.com/Wineries/winery_17/toroalbala2015s.pdf

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PRESS

Don PX Gran Reserva (1988) - "Tasting old sweet PX from Toro Albalá is like a roller coaster ride, which started with the 1988 Don PX Gran Reserva, what for them is their more commercial range, a wine that at close to 30 years of age is still unbottled. They compared it with the 1981 (which I never tasted), because it was a warm year with an exceptional harvest. It has 16.4% alcohol, 340 grams of residual sugar and mixes notes of youth, raisins, figs and dates with other aromas of a long aging like tar, graphite, chocolate and licorice."

91-93 Points
Luis Gutierrez, Wine Advocate, Dec 29, 2017

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Amontillado Convento Palma (1952) - "Names of the old bottlings tend to vary (they are highly creative at Toro Albalá!) and the old Amontillado is now presented as 1952 Amontillado Convento Palma. It has the character of a very old wine, with traces of the biological aging under flor, certainly more pungent and sharper than the Palo Cortado I tasted from 1964. There is, as I have seen in other vintages, a sensation of sweetness on the finish (but no aromas of sweet wine), that kind of softens the sharpness. It could very well be the pure concentration from old age."

93-95 Points
Luis Gutiérrez, Wine Advocate, Dec 29, 2017

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Don PX Convento Selección (1958) - "The oldest of the sweet wines I tried this time was the 1958 Don PX Convento Selección, a very complex and nuanced wine with notes of charred wood, tar, coal, bitter dark chocolate, licorice, roasted coffee beans and aromatic herbs. The palate is compact with no fissures and a bitterness that compensates the sweetness (it has 350 grams of sugar, so it's not a surprise that it doesn't feel as sweet as others). It's relatively dense, complex, rare and unique. "

97-98 Points
Luis Gutiérrez, Wine Advocate, Dec 29, 2017

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Marqués de Poley Amontillado Viejísimo - "Lots of smoked almonds, dried orange peel and a lightly smoky finish. Turns better. Full body, dense and oily. Dry. Drink now."

93 Points
James Suckling, JamesSuckling.com, Jul 24, 2017

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Don PX Cosecha Vieja (1973) - "This wine is like syrup with molasses, espresso, burnt orange and toffee character. Full body, dense and oily. So sweet. Try a thimble full. Drink now."

94 Points
James Suckling, JamesSuckling.com, Jul 24, 2017

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Don PX Pedro Ximénez (2015) - "This is a beautiful Pedro Ximénez with toffee, chocolate and coffee undertones. Some walnuts. Full body, very dense and sweet with persistent and impressive finish. Drink now."

92 Points
James Suckling, JamesSuckling.com, Jul 24, 2017

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Eléctrico Fino 3 Fases - "Pretty dry fino with almond, pear skin and apple character. Medium to full body. Dry and vivid. Flavorful finish. Nice combination of fruit and flor character. Drink now. Screw cap. "

92 Points
James Suckling, JamesSuckling.com, Jul 24, 2017

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Eléctrico Fino del Lagar - "Very dry and vivid fino with a cement, salted nut and dried lemon character. Medium body, attractive fruit and a clean finish. Drink now."

92 Points
James Suckling, jamessuckling.com, Jul 24, 2017

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Don PX Gran Reserva (1987) - "This is very fresh and dense with dried orange peel, toffee and caramel aromas and flavors. Medium to full body, very sweet and flavorful. Maple syrup aftertaste. Fascinating sweet wine. Drink now."

93 Points
James Suckling, jamessuckling.com, Jul 24, 2017

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Don PX Cosecha Vieja (1973) - "Lifted aromas of orange peel and flora overlay concentrated banana, treacle, caramel, licorice and honey. There is a savoury richness underneath extreme sweetness on the palate, coffee essence, creamy vanilla, and immensely long toffee and honey finish."

97 Points, Platinum Award
Decanter, World Wine Awards, May 25, 2017

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Don PX Gran Reserva (1987) - "Heady, enticing treacly nose, notes of molasses, dried banana, coffee, figs and walnuts. Immensely concentrated palate, buttery toffee, spice, aniseed and refreshing acidity on leafy long finish."

95 Points, Gold Award
Decanter, World Wine Awards, May 25, 2017

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Don PX Gran Reserva (1986) - "This dark brown dessert wine is actually a sherry. You would never guess this wine is made from a white grape. While it is not for everyone, those that tried it liked its style and flavors, loved it. It opens with a with an appealing raisin bouquet with hints of brown bread and fig. On the palate, this wine is full bodied, creamy and smooth. The flavor profile is plum and ripe raisin blend with notes of coffee nips, olives and molasses. The finish is dry and fades away nicely. The tasting panel was enamored by this unique wine. They suggested pairing it with a slice of pecan pie. Enjoy – KWGTP"

92 Points
Ken Hoggins, Ken's Wine Guide, Aug 1, 2016

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Don PX Gran Reserva (1987) - "Each year they select a number of single vintage, sweet PX wines to be bottled, the first of which (besides the young wine) is the 1987 Don Px Gran Reserva in 2016 - a wine aged in American oak casks for some 28 years. These wines are almost indestructible, so the drinking windows are mostly academic. This showcases the classical aromas and palate of an old PX from Montilla, strong notes of dark chocolate, dried figs and plums, raisins and sweet spices; the dense, thick and persistent palate where the 380 grams of unfermented sugar are not noticeable, as they are balanced by good acidity that also gets concentrated by age. This is probably the densest of all the wines I tasted today, and there is a distinct, perfumed, almost floral note here (is it violet pastille?), which makes it extremely attractive. It's also the most drinkable of all these old vintages, very balanced within its sweet profile, with marked flavors (also licorice and black olives) that stay in your mouth for one minute. Exotic and exuberant. This is incredibly young and lively, and very good value for the age and quality it delivers. 52,000 liters bottled in 750- and 375-milliliter bottles. The price is for a 750-milliliters."

94 Points
Luis Gutiérrez, Wine Advocate, Apr 1, 2016

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Don PX Gran Reserva (1986) - "Toro Albalá has been releasing vintage-dated, sweet wines in chronological order for a while (I have great memories of the 1972) and the 'current' release is the 1986 Don PX Gran Reserva, which is a dark, sweet and concentrated dessert wine aged in American oak casks until bottling in June 2014. It has 350 grams of residual sugar. It's extremely dark, motor oil-dense, sweet wine with notes of raisins, hints of flowers, minty with aromas of candied orange peel and herbs, really aromatic and showy. The palate is dense, with the sweetness balanced by good acidity plus spicy and chocolate flavors. "

92 Points
Luis Gutierrez, Wine Advocate, Dec 1, 2014

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Don PX Convento Selección (1955) - "One more single-harvest, old sweet wine, the 1955 Don PX Convento Selección was bottled in September 2014 and it had been aged slowly in very old American oak barrels and getting thick and concentrated through evaporation. It's 320 grams of sugar are (partially) compensated by 6.5 grams of acidity. It has a nose and palate of chocolate-covered candied orange, spices, molasses. I'd say the dominant aromas in the nose are dark chocolate. It's very dense, developing notes of very concentrated licorice and balsamic, mint, camphor and evolving notes of petrol with time. Complex, rare and unique."

98 Points
Luis Gutierrez, The Wine Advocate, Dec 1, 2014

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Don PX Selección (1965) - "Small lots of old vintages are released following no apparent logic, like this 1965 Don PX Selection, which is produced with white Pedro Ximénez grapes but it's black rather than white, bottled in June 2014 with 290 grams of residual sugar. It has a nose of pure curry, aromas of an Indian restaurant, very balanced, not as sweet as others, in fact it's more bittersweet than sweet, combining the spices with bitter chocolate and with very good acidity that makes it relatively easy to drink. 9,600 bottles were filled."

97 Points
Luis Gutierrez, The Wine Advocate, Dec 1, 2014

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Don PX Reserva Especial (1947) - "A gorgeous Spanish dessert wine, the Bodegas Toro Albalá 1947 Don PX Reserva Especial Pedro Ximénez (93 points, $258) is coffee-colored and backed by lush deep aromas of fig, caramel, toffee and prune. Treat this as a digestif or a very expensive (but worth it) topping for vanilla ice cream. And keep this in mind: Whatever you don't drink can replace maple syrup atop pancakes or French toast the next morning."

After the Feast
Glasses of Cheer, Wine Enthusiast, Dec 1, 2013

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Don PX Reserva Especial (1947) - "This gorgeous dessert wine shows a coffee-colored tint that’s backed by lush, deep aromas of fig, caramel, toffee and prune. The palate shows weight but a refined mouth- feel that’s not sticky or heavy. Flavors of coffee, mo- cha, chocolate, caramel, peanut brittle and prune finish warm and long. Only 43 cases made. Classical Wines. Editors’ Choice."

93 Points
Michael Schachner, Wine Enthusiast, Oct 1, 2013

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Marqués de Poley Amontillado Viejísimo - "The NV Amontillado Viejísimo Solera 1922 Marques De Poley, produced from Pedro Ximénez grapes aged in a solera of old American oak barrels under flor and later put through oxidative aging. It wears a medium amber color with green edges denoting old age (around 35 years) and a creamy nose of sweet hazelnuts, spices and a touch of smoke. Medium-bodied, with lively acidity and pungent flavors, it ends with an intense, bitter finish. Drink 2013-2016."

90 Points
Luis Gutiérrez, Wine Advocate, Aug 1, 2013

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Don PX Convento (1946) - "The 1946 Don PX Convento Seleccion produced with Pedro Ximenez grapes dehydrated under the sun at the time of the Second World War, was only bottled in September 2011. This is an extreme wine, my first descriptor was ultra-mega-super concentrated. It is unbelievably powerful, both in the nose and the palate, full of umami, with sweet cinnamon, Christmas cake, camphor, petrol, lemongrass, Belgian chocolate and butter. Incredibly complex and rich, sweet, balanced and smooth in the palate, it is both very sweet and somehow salty, and with time it develops a black olive note. It combines the texture of the 1962 and the elegance of the 1949. It is as decadent as it gets. 825 bottles were produced. This wine will survive all of us. These wines are kept for generations and offered in very small quantities, but it’s amazing that you can still buy and drink something so old, and I’m even tempted to say that it might represent good value for what it is. A real tour de force sweet wine. Drink it if you ever have the privilege to do so from 2013-2060."

100 Points
Luis Gutiérrez, Wine Advocate, Aug 1, 2013

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Don PX Gran Reserva (1983) - "The 1983 Don PX Gran Reserva has been aged in old oak barrels until bottled in 2012, and is several steps up in age and complexity. Here the dominant notes are tar, graphite, smoke, roasted coffee and dark chocolate. It’s extremely concentrated, dense and sweet, ends very spicy with curry notes and stays in your mouth for minutes. Drink 2013-2025."

91 Points
Luis Gutiérrez, Wine Advocate, Aug 1, 2013

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Don PX Reserva Especial (1949) - "The 1949 Don PX Reserva Especial differs from the other old wines from the winery as it is less dark, it even has a (very dark) translucent tone compared with the others, maybe because it has 2% more alcohol. It feels incredibly elegant and balanced, fresher in comparison than the beasts from 1962 and 1946, medicinal, full of spicy notes of cinnamon, cloves, a touch of ash, and the smell of an antique shop. The palate is fluid, sweet and fresh. Putting a drinking window to these wines feels a bit silly. You should drink it whenever you have the occasion. Drink 2013-2040."

97 Points
Luis Gutiérrez, Wine Advocate, Aug 1, 2013

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Don PX Reserva Especial (1962) - "The 1962 Don PX Reserva Especial is pitch black, dense as (used) motor oil, medicinal and balsamic, with a grassy nose of licorice, black olives, roasted coffee, smoke and ash, very intense and expressive in the palate, spicy (nutmeg) with incredible length, perhaps not as integrated as the 49 and 46. These wines have to be tasted to be believed. It was bottled after 49 years aging in bota. Drink 2013-2040."

95 Points
Luis Gutiérrez, Wine Advocate, Aug 1, 2013

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Don PX Pedro Ximénez (2008) - "Colour: dark mahogany. Nose: cocoa bean, sweet spices, fruit liqueur notes, honeyed notes. Palate: spirituous, flavourful, toasty, spicy, balanced."

90 Points
Guía Peñín, Jun 1, 2013

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Don PX Gran Reserva (1985) - "Colour: dark mahogany. Nose: complex, expressive, floral, blasamic herbs, balanced, dried fruit, fruit liqueur notes. Palate: full, flavourful, elegant, unctuous."

94 Points
Guía Peñín, Jun 1, 2013

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Don PX Gran Reserva (1982) - "More like a syrup than a wine, this has an unctuous texture, hitting with notes of caramel that slowly melt into smoky, saline flavors. A wine to drink in small sips or to glaze beef ribs."

93 Points
Patricio Tapia, Wine & Spirits, Jun 1, 2011

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Toro Albalá Amontillado Viejísimo - "The soft texture of this Amontillado, along with a subtle sweetness, converts it into an approachable wine, seemingly easy to understand. With air, the complexity of its flavors appears, bringing in notes of green olives and salted nuts that contrast the caramelized finish. Not at all tiring, on the contrary, this invites another sip. For smoked trout."

92 Points
Patricio Tapia, Wine & Spirits, Jun 1, 2011

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Viejísimo Solera Amontillado (1922) - "Made from pedro ximénez, this is succulent and powerful. The acidity is firm, spreading salty and iodine notes over a lightly caramelized base. Enjoy it with salted almonds."

90 Points
Patricio Tapia, Wine & Spirits, Oct 1, 2008

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Don PX Gran Reserva (1979) - "Aromas of fresh fig and roses pick up treacle and smoke notes in this distinctive fortified wine. It's mellow, and it remains persistent through the long finish. Drink now."

90 Points
Bruce Sanderson, Wine Spectator, Jan 1, 2008

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Don PX Pedro Ximénez (2004) - "Supersweet, but also high in alcohol, lending a rustic cast to it. Butterscotch, lexia raisin and smoke flavors are concentrated and linger on the finish. Drink now."

88 Points
Bruce Sanderson, Wine Spectator, Jan 1, 2008

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Don PX Gran Reserva (1979) - "From just outside of Jerez comes this savory-sweet wine with thick dried fig, green olive and wild herb flavors. -3 stars"


Jamal A. Rayyis, Food & Wine, Wine Guide, Dec 31, 2007

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Don PX Pedro Ximénez (2004) - "Ultra concentrated and sticky, with unctuous but wholesome raisin aromas taken to a level that's almost heavenly. In the mouth, the maple, cinnamon and brown sugar flavors are lusty and satisfying, and the finish never ends. This is P.X. in awesome form. "

93 Points Editor's Choice
Michael Schachner, Wine Enthusiast, Nov 30, 2007

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La Noria PX Certified Organic Pedro Ximénez (2003) - "Offers aromas and flavors of figs, dates, toffee and caramel. Viscous and sweet, with superb concentration, this elixir is a fine way to end a meal."

90 Points
Jay Miller, Wine Advocate, Feb 15, 2007

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Don PX Pedro Ximénez Gran Reserva (1971) - "Coats the glass with glycerin. Smelling like an amalgam of toffee, caramel, fig, and roasted nuts, it tastes like French toast covered with maple syrup. On the palate the wine is silky and intense with a very long finish."

94 Points
Jay Miller, Wine Advocate, Feb 1, 2007

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Don PX Reserva Especial (1966) - "Black in color. The aromatics fill the room with scents of figs, dates, caramel, toffee, and other candied fruits. The wine is amazingly intense and long and a remarkable achievement. "

96 Points
Jay Miller, Wine Advocate, Feb 1, 2007

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La Noria PX Certified Organic Pedro Ximénez (2003) - "Thick, cloying and intensely sweet. Full of raisin and caramel flavors. Coats the palate, fading gracefully with raisin, spice and chocolate accents. Drink now."

90 Points
Bruce Sanderson, Wine Spectator, Nov 15, 2006

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Don PX Pedro Ximénez Gran Reserva (1971) - "Ebony-tinged, high-acid wine with intense flavors of sweet blackberry, camphor and papaya that give this a long finish."

***
Jamal A. Rayyis, Food & Wine, Wine Guide 2007, Oct 1, 2006

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Don PX Pedro Ximénez Gran Reserva (1971) - "Don PX Gran Reserva 1971 - Outstanding dessert wine, extremely concentrated, intense molasses, raisin and caramel flavors; expensive at $40 and way underpriced for the quality."

****1/2
Michael Lonsford, The Houston Chronicle, May 1, 2006

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Don PX Pedro Ximénez Gran Reserva (1971) - "Almost black, yet this is light and lively, with molasses, bitter chocolate, raisin and mineral aromas and flavors. Well-balanced and integrated, it's fresh and long on the finish."

93 Points
Thomas Matthews, Wine Spectator, Nov 15, 2005

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Don PX Convento (1959) - "Dark and brooding in color, this is surprisingly fresh and light, combining both fresh and dried fig, grape, raisin and molasses aromas and flavors. Fine balance and length."

92 Points
Thomas Matthews, Wine Spectator, Nov 15, 2005

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Don PX Pedro Ximénez Gran Reserva (2002) - "More dried fruit than fresh fruit aromas and flavors, this shows fig, raisin, caramel, and chocolate matched to a big frame. Viscous and concentrated, with a hint of tar on the finish."

90 Points
Thomas Matthews, Wine Spectator, Nov 15, 2005

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Don PX Convento (1972) - "Black as coal and thick as engine oil, this is nevertheless thrillingly alive, balancing savory against sweet with elegant dexterity. Dried tangerine and date dominate the flavors, but the hint of beef broth and rosemary lurk there, too, lasting long into the finish; throughout, the vivid acidity keeps everything lifted above the massive sweetness"

92 Points
Ray Isle, Wine & Spirits Magazine, Apr 1, 2005

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Don PX Pedro Ximénez Gran Reserva (1971) - "Fruitier than the PX above, this runs a citrus scale from tangerine to orange to almost lemony acidity; but the sweet richness underneath is more like blackstrap molasses. It looks like molasses, too, but don't be daunted. Try serving it with mandarin orange sorbet ."

90 Points
Ray Isle, Wine & Spirits Magazine, Apr 1, 2005

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Don PX Pedro Ximénez Gran Reserva (1975) - "Literally thick as molasses, black mahogany in color (even though the grapes started out white), and with an electifying sweetness suggestive of caramel, dark brown sugar, raisins, and roasted nuts, Don PX Gran Reserva is one of the most unique dessert wine experiences you could ever have. In fact, this should probably be considered dessert, period, not a dessert wine, for you won't need anything to go along."


Karen McNeil, The Wine Lover's Calendar 2004, Oct 1, 2003

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Don PX Pedro Ximénez Gran Reserva (1975) - "Atypical. A little spritz in both the aroma and palate gives the raisin, mint and chocolate flavors a hard edge, yet a freshness too, balancing the concentration and leaving an impression of lightness on the finish."

90 Points
Bruce Sanderson, Wine Spectator, Sep 30, 2002

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WINERY LOCATION



WINES

Click on a wine name below to learn more about the vintage:

Don PX Bacchus (1939)

Don PX Convento (1959)

Don PX Convento (1946)

Don PX Ginés Liébana (1910)

Don PX Gran Reserva (1987)

Don PX Gran Reserva (1986)

Don PX Gran Reserva (1985)

Don PX Gran Reserva (1983)

Don PX Gran Reserva (1982)

Don PX Marqués de Poley (1945)

Don PX Pedro Ximénez (2015)

Don PX Pedro Ximénez (2014)

Don PX Pedro Ximénez (2012)

Don PX Pedro Ximénez (2010)

Don PX Reserva Especial (1966)

Don PX Reserva Especial (1962)

Don PX Reserva Especial (1949)

Eléctrico Fino 3 Fases

Eléctrico Fino del Lagar

Marqués de Poley Amontillado Viejísimo

Marqués de Poley Cream PX

Marqués de Poley Oloroso

Toro Albalá Amontillado Viejísimo

Toro Albalá Cream PX

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