Ribera del Duero, ‘Malabrigo’, Bodegas Cepa 21
Malabrigo roughly translates to ‘bad coat,’ a reference to the fact that this top wine from Cepa 21 comes from high-elevation north-facing Tinto Fino vineyards in one of the coolest microclimates in the Ribera del Duero. These conditions produce a slow and even maturation. This ultra-small production bottling (5,000 bottles produced) is fermented and aged for 21 months in new French barrels.
Castilla Y Leon
Ribera del Duero
An intense and profound cherry red, with the violet rim of youth. Intense aromas of black fruit jam, with the marked presence of spic y notes and Indian ink. The toasty nuances integrate with the primary aromas offering a noble ensemble with great personality. On the palette it is silky and rounded , persistent with a long finish which allows us to enjoy the hints of spicy fruits.
Request a shelf talker/case card
Press & Reviews
The top of the range in the Cepa 21 project is the 2011 Malabrigo, pure Tempranillo from a cold, north-facing vineyard planted some 20 years ago that seems to have taken the oak better than the Cepa 21. Perhaps the cooler vineyard, with a little less alcohol, has provided a better counterbalance to the élevage. The wine went through malo and 18 months upbringing in French oak barrels. Even though, the nose is eminently balsamic, with smoky bacon and roasted notes, hints of peat and graphite intermixed with dark berries. A modern Ribera, ripe, and nicely oaked with a full-bodied palate where there is good balance between tannins and alcohol, keeping enough freshness. 5,000 bottles produced.
Cepa 21 is the joint venture of the Moro family with some other partners. Here they want to produce fresh wines from north-facing, high-altitude vineyards where the vegetative cycle is longer. While in Emilio Moro the hierarchy is defined by vine age, here the definitive parameter is altitude. They have 25 hectares that were planted from their massale selection from the Emilio Moro Valderramiro vineyard in Castrillo de Duero. They are now in search of more concentration in the wines while keeping the elegance, and they have changed the labels to a cleaner style featuring the words Tempranillo and España, two concepts that they want to exploit in their wines.
A creamy texture carries the flavors of black cherry, chocolate and toast, with savory notes of black olive and tar, in this harmonious red. The firm tannins are well-integrated and balanced by gentle acidity. Drink now through 2021. 375 cases made.
Glass-staining ruby. Potent, spice-accented aromas of ripe black and blue fruits, candied flowers and smoky minerals, with a smoky mineral quality emerging with aeration. Sweet, expansive and seamless on the palate, offering intense black raspberry and lavender pastille flavors and a touch of peppery spices. Stains the palate on the impressively long finish, with supple tannins adding shape and grip. This wine went through malo in new French oak casks and was then aged for 18 months in another set of new French oak barriques.