The entry-level red and largest volume of Abadía Retuerta, the 2012 Selección Especial, is nothing like the initial oaky versions of it you might remember. This is produced as a blend of Tempranillo with 15% Cabernet Sauvignon and 10% Syrah from the 54 separate plots that they have identified in their 180 hectares of vineyards. This 2012 matured in French (60%) and American (40%) oak barrels for 14 months, a slightly shorter time than in previous vintages. The casks were one third new, one third second use and one third third use. This is the wine that has improved the most, and it's now a fine, elegant wine with restrained power, true to the place where it's born and the vintage when the grapes are harvested. This is the highly recommended wine from the winery. All grapes ripened properly in 2012 and the Cabernet feels very integrated; there are some spicy aromas intermixed with the wild berry aromas, developing some balsamic undertones, licorice and a little bit of toast. It is very subtle and nicely compact. The texture is very fine with dusty tannins, good acidity and freshness. It is long, balanced and supple, with power and elegance. The wine is approachable now and with stuffing to age. It is a great value and highly recommended. The 1,250 barrels filled 350,000 bottles, 11,290 magnums and 300 double magnums, so the wine should be readily available.
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