Toro is often overshadowed by the famous and much larger Ribera del Duero wine region. However, Toro is a special place in its own right, with some of the oldest vineyards in all of Spain. This particular bottle comes from a tiny estate owned by two brothers with 16ha of land with ungrafted vines. The majority of the vineyard is older than 100 years and was never affected by phylloxera.
The grape is the Tinta de Toro grape, an ancient clone of Tempranillo. While technically this means “Red Grape from the Community of Toro,” most winemakers prefer the more literal translation of “Blood of the Bull.” Until a few years ago, the wines earned their reputation as being aggressive to the point of feral.
A new generation of winemakers has adopted modern winemaking techniques. They are yoking these beasts with oak and coaxing a softness with gentle fermentation. The wines are still aggressive and tannic, but they now charge up the wine ratings with their modern sensibilities.
The Wine Review
Aged for two years in new French barriques, the 2012 Carodorum Selección Especial is the best bottle of Toro on the market today. Aromas of jasmine, melted chocolate, and dark fruit. Full-bodied and massively tannic, this is the biggest bully in the pen.