Quintessential Spanish Reds: Ribera del Duero’s Áster

Ribera del Duero’s Áster

Quintessential Spanish Reds

Top Tempranillo from Spain’s other great region, Ribera del Duero, often rivals Rioja. Everything in Ribera is intense. They have a Mediterranean climate with extreme continentality, meaning very cold winters and hot summers, and some of the highest altitudes in the northern hemisphere – often 800m+! ‘This exceptional climate gives Ribera’s wines a refreshing, mouthwatering acidity that provides the perfect balance to the ripe summer fruit,’ says Decanter.

Bodegas Àster, named after a Spanish flower that blooms at harvest, offers up two powerful and vivacious reds from the benchmark 2016 vintage – their top wine, 96-pointer (TA) Áster Finca El Otero 2016, and the spicy and supple Áster Crianza 2016. Both are 100% Tempranillo, known locally as Tinto del Pais or Tinto Fino.

In 1991, after much research, legendary La Rioja Alta S.A. planted 76 hectares in the Ribera del Duero region at an altitude of 780m-830m. The plot is in Anguix near Burgos, which Tim Atkin describes as ‘the home of most of the best wines’ in Ribera del Duero. The first Àster was bottled in 2000.

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