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Losada Vinos de Finca

El Pájaro Rojo 2017

Price: $19.00 (average US retail)
Size: 750ml
Winery: Losada Vinos de Finca
Vintage Year: 2017
Country: Spain
Region: Castilla y León
Appellation: D.O. El Bierzo

TASTING NOTES

Mencía from old vines in clay soils, malolactic fermentation without further aging in French oak barriques. An ample yet fresh style, with red fruit and floral notes in the nose and a long, silky finish.

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PRESS

El Pájaro Rojo (2017) - "Smoke, licorice and mountain herb notes frame black cherry and mineral flavors in this fleshy red. Light, firm tannins and lively acidity keep this focused. Drink now through 2023."

89 Points
Thomas Matthews, Wine Spectator, Mar 31, 2019

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El Pájaro Rojo (2016) - "This is really minerally with granite and blueberry character. Medium to full body, firm and linear tannins and a long finish."

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

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El Pájaro Rojo (2016) - "Roasted berry and plum aromas include notes of ham and bacon. This wine is grabby and tannic on the palate. Meaty plum and currant flavors set up an extracted finish with hard residual tannins. There's a lot of fruit and power here but not much elegance. "

89 Points
Michael Schachner, Wine Enthusiast, May 1, 2018

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El Pájaro Rojo (2016) - "Light and crisp, this red offers tart cherry and berry flavors that mingle with leafy and smoky flavors, with firm acidity for structure. Focused and fresh."

88 Points
Thomas Matthews, Wine Spectator, Feb 28, 2018

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El Pájaro Rojo (2015) - "This fresh red offers herb-scented cherry and blood orange flavors, with hints of smoke and mineral. Lively acidity and gentle tannins give this focus through the coffee-touched finish. Drink now through 2020. "

88 Points
Thomas Matthews, Wine Spectator, May 31, 2017

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El Pájaro Rojo (2014) - "The 2014 Pájaro Rojo is a young unbaked Mencía from mostly clay soils in the Bierzo valley. They used 5% full clusters and fermented with indigenous yeasts. The wine rested for a couple of months with the lees before being transferred to oak barrels for a short élevage of around six months. There are aromas of ripe black fruit intermixed with dark spices and some orange peel, giving an overall feeling of ripeness with freshness. The palate shows great intensity of flavors and power with balance. A very good, young and powerful Mencía."

89 Points
Luis Gutierrez, Wine Advocate, Apr 1, 2016

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El Pájaro Rojo (2014) - "Brilliant ruby. Dark berries, violet and allspice on the fragrant nose, with a hint of licorice in the background. Supple, open-knit blackberry and cherry compote flavors are sharpened by a peppery element that gains strength on the back half."

89 Points
Josh Raynolds, Vinous, Jan 1, 2016

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El Pájaro Rojo (2013) - "Mencía thrives on slate, but when it’s grown on clay it can tend toward low-acid wines. That’s the case in certain areas of Bierzo, expecially around Villafranca, the capital of the D.O. This wine, from 30- to 40-year-old vines, seems to be an exception. With rich flavors of ripe red fruit, earth and spice, this is a complex and juicy Bierzo. Yes, its texture is soft and creamy, but it runs deep into meaty flavors and mineral tannins, a wine that needs oxtail today or five years in bottle."

93 Points ~ Best Buy
Patricio Tapia, Wine & Spirits, Aug 1, 2015

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El Pájaro Rojo (2013) - "Lurid ruby color. Spicy cherry and black raspberry aromas show good clarity and notes of cracked pepper and fresh rose. Tangy and focused on the palate, offering bitter cherry and spicecake flavors and a touch of succulent herbs. Closes tight and nervy, with subtle tannins and lingering spiciness."

89 Points
Josh Raynolds, International Wine Cellar, Sep 1, 2014

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El Pájaro Rojo (2012) - "As meaty as a southern Rhône red, this mencía is black, ample and soft. A delicious wine and a beautiful snapshot of the variety as it grows in Bierzo, this comes from vines between 30 and 40 years old."

91 Points, 100 Best Buys of the Year
Patricio Tapia, Wine & Spirits, Oct 1, 2013

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El Pájaro Rojo (2012) - "Bright purple. Earthy cassis and licorice aromas are given an exotic touch by notes of pipe tobacco, smoked meat and musky underbrush. Ripe dark berry flavors are supple and broad, with a peppery element providing lift. Slow-building tannins give structure to the finish, which shows good clarity[…] "

88 Points
Josh Raynolds, International Wine Cellar, Sep 1, 2013

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El Pájaro Rojo (2011) - "A rich and unctuous Mencía, this has a fluency in the mouth, deploying its ripeness, completely covering the palate with caramelized and voluptuous flavors. For grilled meats."

90 Points, Year's Best, Best Buy, 100 Best Values of the Year
Patricio Tapia, Wine & Spirits, Oct 1, 2012

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El Pájaro Rojo (2011) - "Spicy and surprisingly complex, with earthy fruit and herbal flavors."

***, Top Rated Wines from Bierzo, BEST VALUE
Eric Asimov, New York Times, Sep 19, 2013

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El Pájaro Rojo (2011) - "2014 New Year's resolution: find and drink more mencía grapes from this area of Spain; red fruits in spades, with electric energy on the tongue; pizza, pizza, pizza. $14-$17"

"20 Wines for Under $20"
Bill St. John, The Chicago Tribune, Jan 10, 2014

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LOSADA VINOS DE FINCA WINERY INFO

Overview: Losada Vinos de Finca was established by Bierzo winemaking veterans in 2004, its beautiful ultra-modern facility located in the heart of Bierzo’s finest vineyard area, in the very midst of the old Mencía vines.

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History: Losada Vinos de Finca was established in 2004 on the outskirts of the village of Pieros, on the Camino de Santiago, midway between Cacabelos and Villafranca del Bierzo, opposite the ruins of Castro Ventosa, Bierzo’s Roman-era fortification.

Losada’s founding philosophy was to take the region’s wines to higher level, prioritizing elegance, balance and purity of expression through limited production and adequate, but not excessive, technology. They sought out old Mencía vineyards planted on primarily clay soils, a terroir which had been relatively overlooked by the Bierzo new wave of the 1990s in its ‘rush to slate’.

The skins of Mencía grapes grown on clay soils are more hydrated and less thick, the structure more mellow, the wines generally softer in feel. Fresh acidity (the backbone of Bierzo wines) in combination with this tenderness, created an elegance that is now considered a principal characteristic of Bierzo wines.

Every part of the winemaking process is unhurried. The sustainably-farmed fruit is harvested by hand and undergoes rigorous selection on the vine so that additional sorting at the winery is minimal. After de-stemming, the grapes are gently crushed and fermentation begins naturally using the indigenous yeasts. Fruit from individual plots is kept separate in order to better observe and interpret the variety from each location, a traditional non-interventionist technique that aims to showcase the soil. Cooperage is 100% French, with a minimum barrel capacity of 300L. All techniques are adjusted according to the character of the vintage, and the wines are differentiated according to vineyard origin rather than the length of time spent in the barrel.

Link to New York Times article "Beguiling Reds from Bierzo" (pdf): http://classicalwines.com/Wineries/winery_68/Losada_NYTimes.pdf

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El Pájaro Rojo (2011)

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