Wednesday, 29 January 2014

Palo Cortado Bota Punta No.6 21%, Equipo Navazos

Deep limpid amber with slight reddy hue (almost like very old colheita Port) fading through pale yellow to a trace of green on the rim. Legs.
Fresh and aromatic with lots of toasted almonds and a delightful raisins in caramel sweetness, then a salty, slightly bitter tang of flor and a trace of wood dry things out a bit. Hints of pastry with almond cream and tangy raisin with a faint whiff of cinnamon, complex, interesting and very elegant.
Quite light but full of flavour, tangy, almost crisp with more phenolic notes of wood and walnut, even a certain earthy bitterness which balance with that slight implied sweetness. While the nose is very Amontillado, the palate is more oloroso in style, which is the hallmark of good Palo Cortado. This is a really characterful wine, very long and quite superb.
It comes from a tiny old solera of 7 butts originally established by Fernando Carrasco Sagastizabal in his old bodegas at Rincon Malillo and Cordobeses, which was bought by M Gil Luque, owned by La Guita, in 1995. It was then moved to their bodega complex at Vina El Telegrafo. In 2007, La Guita including Gil Luque was taken over by Grupo Estevez, and the solera was moved again to their modern facilities. Just before this happened, and before any changes that might happen to the wine, Equipo Navazos managed to bottle 300 half bottles from the Bota Punta, or end butt, the one containing the best wine of all. Luque had been using the old Carrasco Sagastizabal soleras for their flagship range De Bandera. This wine, then, is unique, though Equipo Navazos may well look at the solera again once  it has settled down.
I paid around 30 euros for the half bottle in Spain, but I doubt it will still be obtainable. Try winesearcher.

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