Gago Toro (750ml)
Castilla y Leon
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Aged CheeseLambRoast meats
Telmo Rodriguez makes wine is Toro, in the province of Zamora, part of the autonomous community of Castile and León, Spain. He is one of the country’s pioneer winemakers, advocating native grape varietals tied to the climates and conditions of their sites. While Telmo Rodriguez makes rare and limited wines of great character and quality, his everyday wines are equally impressive, and widely recognized for the tremendous value they offer. Telmo Rodriguez has worked tirelessly to elevate the quality of wine from this region and his efforts have paid off with the wine from Toro enjoying international acclaim. Telmo, along with a few other notable winemakers in the region, was one of the first to rediscover vineyards of decades-old, bush-trained vineyards in Toro. He was a major force in elevating the region to one of the most interesting “new” wine regions of Spain. Since 1998, Telmo has worked with 8 families of growers practicing traditional viticulture. Vineyards planted in low density, 100% bush vines. Harvest is completely manual, using small boxes.
The Telmo Rodriguez wines in Toro are named after a Spanish breed of bull that is both elegant and powerful. That epitomizes the challenge in the region, to work in areas that are cooler, and with vines that are trained and adapted to the heat, so that a freshness plays with the fruit concentration. The 19th century lower-case “g” typeface that appears on all the Toro wines is transformed, and modernized, by a bull horn.
Black cherry, cassis and floral notes give way gamey undertones, truffle, wood, chocolate and clove. The palate is silky and lush with dark ripe fruit, some vegetal, heather, earth and minerality. Lots of concentration and bright acidity with fine grained tannins and a long fragrant finish.
Made from 100% Tinta de Toro grapes (the local clone of Tempranillo) this terrific tasting red hails from the Toro region of Castile and León, Spain. Gago is the second wine made in Toro by Telmo Rodriguez. Gago is Telmo’s most representative wine of Toro, combining the oldest vines of the 8 families with whom he’s worked with for years, and his experience to make pure and balanced wines. He was one of the first to rediscover vineyards of decades-old, bush-trained vineyards and played a major role in elevating Toro to one of the most in vogue wine regions of Spain. Gago is 100% Tinto de Toro (the local clone of Tempranillo) from old bush vines grown on the distinctive red soils of the region. The grapes for Gago are picked by hand, fermented by natural yeasts in neutral cement casks, and aged in a combination of foudres and new and seasoned French barriques for around a year. The maturation lasts 14 months in 225 liter barrels.
Made from the local clone of Tempranillo (Tinto de Toro), this expression of the grape shows how well the varietal can do across the diverse regions of Spain. On the nose, floral notes like rose and violet are accompanied by some red cherry, and dark fruits like black cherry and blackberry. Some added crushed rocks and herbs are present, too. Those black fruits- with some added cassis, come through on the palate as well as slightly-gripping tannins and a long, dry, lovely finish. I paired this with low and slow roasted pork shoulder that was marinated in a mole-like sauce and served with arro rojo (red rice) but this can stand up to many lamb dishes or other roasted meat dishes. If you love Rioja and are looking to change it up, Gago Toro would be a great lateral move that should please most full-bodied red drinkers!