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Finch Fine Wines

Molino Real Málaga "Mountain Wine" (500 mL) 2015

Molino Real Málaga "Mountain Wine" (500 mL) 2015

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Regular price $57.99 USD
Regular price $69.99 USD Sale price $57.99 USD
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Varietal(s): Moscatel de Alejandría

This treasure resembles liquid gold in the glass. Almonds, marmalade, and matcha green tea notes come together with a surprising balance of honeyed fruits, balanced acidity, and a fresh finish.

I still have to visit the vineyards where they produced the 2015 Molino Real, the stunning sweet Moscatel from Málaga. The grapes are sourced from up to nine hectares of vines on slate slopes at elevations that range between 350 and 1,000 meters. The grapes are sun dried to further concentrate the juice and then pressed with oil presses separated by esparto grass mats, like it was done in the past. They tell me they need 2.5 kilos of grapes to obtain one liter of juice. Fermentation is long and happens in 225-liter oak barrels, where the wine matures at low temperature for 20 months. This feels sooooo young and tender, undeveloped and reticent compared with the 2013 and 2014 I tasted next to it. These wines need at least five years to start showing their true colors. It's faintly minty, not really grapey, but balsamic, with faint notes of bitter orange marmalade. The one thing I also like is that this wine is never overwhelmingly sweet and feels fresher. It's hard to guess what's going to happen with this wine in a few years, but I think it will evolve beautifully.

95 pts. Robert Parker

Moscatel grapes for their flagship Molino Real wine come from nine hectares of organically grown bush-trained vines on steep slate slopes at elevations between 350 and 1,000 meters, located around the village of Cómpeta, in the rugged Axarquía region in Málaga. The region, facing the Mediterranean sea, with terraced vineyards on steep slate cliffs, could draw comparisons to Priorat in the north, or Roussillon, Banyuls, and Maury in southern France. As is traditional, the grapes for the sweet wines are dried on cañas, reed mats, in the sun. Frames are set up so that temporary roofing can be used in case of rain. Dehydration by sun exposure concentrates grapes in such a way that all the sugar and alcohol in the resulting wines come strictly from the grapes.

The sun-drying process, asoleo, is a tough manual job. After picking grapes on dangerous slopes with 40-60% incline, perfect and undamaged bunches are carefully placed in harvest boxes and arduously carried up the mountain to the winery, where they are laid on the pasera and progressively turned to obtain homogeneous dehydration. Once the bunches reach the desired degree of dehydration, they are pressed with old olive oil presses, bunches being separated by grass mats. The result is a rich, long-lived, sweet wine that honors the tradition and history of the historic “mountain wines” of Málaga and takes its place among the world’s greatest sweet wines.

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