x
  • Country ranking ?

    126
  • Producer ranking ?

    35
  • Decanting time

    2h
  • When to drink

    now to 2045
  • Food Pairing

    Mashed Potatoes with Roasted Garlic

The Tb points given to this wine are the world’s most valid and most up-to-date evaluation of the quality of the wine. Tastingbook points are formed by the Tastingbook algorithm which takes into account the wine ratings of the world's 50 best-known professional wine critics, wine ratings by thousands of tastingbook’s professionals and users, the generally recognised vintage quality and reputation of the vineyard and winery. Wine needs at least five professional ratings to get the Tb score. Tastingbook.com is the world's largest wine information service which is an unbiased, non-commercial and free for everyone.

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The Story

Unico is the Vega Sicilia flagship. The qualities of the Tempranillo and Cabernet Sauvignon in different proportions are assembled to perfection in this wine. Each provides a differentiating factor that makes the wine great in every vintage.

The vines are grown on plots where the land is located at the point between the slopes down from the wasteland and the alluvial plain. The soil nearest the surface is made out of fine colluvial deposits from the hillside with small fragment of limestone. There is abundant quartz gravel deeper down in a sandy main soil. There are many angular limestone boulders on the surface.

Red wine made in controlled fermentation using native yeast in wooden tanks. Malolactic fermentation also takes place in wood.  After its fermentation, its goes through what is probably the world's longest ageing of a red wine, almost 10 years between wood and bottle. The different stages take place in different types of barrel: American and French wood, new and used 225-litre barrels, 20,000-litre vats, each batch is what determines the type of wood and the time spent in each container. After the stage in the wood, it is aged in the bottle to complete a long and complex ageing process. It will normally spend 6 years in wood and three in the bottle.

The different elements in its preparation are fine-tuned in the search of the master line that has guided the wine. Único remains true to a clear and well-defined style, with an inimitable character and style; elegance, strength, ageing capacity... A unique and timeless taste that has elevated it to among the aristocracy of the great classic wines.

It offers an infinite complexity that is gradually revealed, in every sip, the palate immensely silky and elegant, and has an ageing capacity that only a handful of wines in the world can claim.

 

Bodegas Vega Sicilia Unico is still “a prophet in its own land”, Spain, and only a small part of the production leaves the country to be sold abroad. The production of Unico varies from 30.000 to 100.000 bottles depending on the year. The commercial success of Unico is nevertheless decided beforehand regardless of the amount produced, since each vintage is already sold out before the bottling. Yet 700 people are queuing for Unico´s customer list hoping that some of the customers of long standing would give up their place, or forget to order anything for two years, which automatically drops them from the list. The list of the privileged subscribers does not exceed 4,000, and they naturally remain anonymous. Pablo Alvarez, manager of Vega Sicilia, is conscientious when it comes to impartiality towards long standing loyal customers, even though the balance between the company´s firm commercial policy and influential quarters wanting wines outside its customer list is not always easy to maintain.

 


For example, when Queen Elizabeth II visited Spain a few years ago, the British Embassy wanted Vega Sicilia to represent Spain´s wine tradition at the dinner arranged to honour the Queen. Although the order had been duly placed and at decent notice, the estate was able to deliver only four cases for the dinner, of course with all manner of apologies for not having been able to meet the order in full.
Respecting loyal customers has been a matter of tremendous importance for Bodegas Vega Sicilia throughout its history. When Jesús Anadón was the estate steward the United States´ importer paid a visit and told him that in his faraway homeland the demand was more than 200.000 bottles. As he determinedly insisted that his order be multiplied, the inimitable Jesús stated without blinking an eye that the limit was 500 bottles and no more, and this was his last word.


Unico is a unique wine, and one of the great Spanish classics. It is the signature wine of Vega Sicilia and is taken from some of the oldest vines available. The wine is mostly Tempranillo and Cabernet Sauvignon.
– The Unico wine is produced only in exceptional years, that is, in the course of one decade two or three vintages are "sacrificed" in order to maintain the high quality. It is right that the effect of the harvest is present in each wine: then the -81, -74, -75, -66. -65 and -62 are Unicos in aromatical complexity reaching baroque extremes and the -70, -89, -62, -42 and -22 ones are based on the tannic power reaching to be perpetual wine” , said Mr. Alvarez to me when we asked his personal opinion best vintages of Unicos

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Tasting note

color

Deep and Opaque

ending

Long and Extensive

flavors

Blackberry, Tar, Voluptuous, Coffee, Smoky and Cedar

nose

Wide and Complex

recommend

Yes

taste

Average in Acidity, High alcohol content, High tannin, Well-Integrated, Multi-dimensional, Complex, Youthful, Full-bodied, Powerful and Sweet tannins

Verdict

nice but not special and Good everyday wine

Written Notes

An excellent vintage according to the official DO score, with a textbook Ribera weather pattern: a cold winter, with high-average amount of rain followed by a cold and rainy spring without frost. The summer was warm with rain on and off and dry, warm weather for a harvest that started on 1 October. Único was made with 90% Tinto Fino and 10% Cabernet Sauvignon and spent 20 months in oak vats, two years in new barrels and another two years in used ones with a final period of 19 months back in the high-volume casks. It produced 99,500 bottles that were released in 2007 and 2,235 magnums sold in 2010.
We are still tasting 'young' wines, this one is only starting to develop the complexity of bottle ageing. Warm but not overripe, with good structure. Supple and elegant, some freshness, with more acidity than average. (LG)

  • 91p

Ruby. Red berries, blackberries, liquorice, spices, vanilla, intense, dark berries, layered. Fresh acidity, ripe tannins, fruity, red berries, spices, dark berries, intense, still red berries and refreshing, long. 95

  • 95p

Dark garnet red colour. Wonderful nose, elegant fruit, elderberries, mulberries, fine spices. On the palate well structured with freshness, well balanced tannins and acidity, excellent length. Promising potential.

  • 93p
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Information

Origin

Valbuena, Ribera el Duero

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