Bodegas Alion Ribera del Duero 2018
|Region||Spain, Ribera del Duero|
"Fresh and very floral with violets and berries. Blackberries and orange peel, too. Medium-to full-bodied with firm, linear tannins. Excellent length and structure. Seriously structured, Better after 2024, but already beautiful." James Suckling 96 points Drink 2023-32
The 2018 Alión follows the path of the 2016: it is fresh and elegant and from a cooler (more Atlantic) vintage with more rain than the average and a relatively late harvest between September 28th and October 12th. They used 80% new barrels, with up to 10% made of American oak looking to (in their own words) give more sucrosity and sweetness to the wine, as it's a more vertical, tense and elegant expression of Alión. Part of the wine matured in concrete (something they started in 2016), and in 2021 they are experimenting with a 4,000-liter Rousseau foudre, as they want to keep working the texture and freshness. The wine is ripe at 15% alcohol and has a pH of 3.8 and a mellow 4.6 grams of acidity, round and soft. The wine matured until it was bottled in June 2020. The truth is that the wine comes through as subtle, elegant and balanced, with very integrated oak and a nice texture. It's one of the finest vintages for Alión.
A harmonious red, with a core of ripe black plum and cassis fruit layered with fine, creamy tannins. Medium- to full-bodied and plush on the palate, offering pretty violet, dried thyme and mocha accents and an underpinning of loamy earth, which linger on the sculpted finish. Best from 2023 through 2033.