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Bodegas Gutiérrez de la Vega

Casta Diva Fondillón 1995

Price: $73.00 (average US retail)
Size: 500ml
Winery: Bodegas Gutiérrez de la Vega
Vintage Year: 1995
Highest Rating: 93pts ( International Wine Cellar)
Country: Spain
Region: Valencia
Appellation: D.O. Alicante-Marina Alta


Monastrell (Mourvèdre) from old vines allowed to raisin on the vine. Whole cluster fermentation is carried out in an open-ended barrique, obtaining approximately 16% natural alcohol, subsequently aged in barrel until release. A rare and magnificent dessert wine.

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Casta Diva Fondillón (1999) - "Fondillón represents the pinnacle of red Spanish dessert wines, and the 1999 vintage just might make your jaw drop. Subtle but expansive on the nose, with a blend of baked dark-fruit and cinnamon aromas, it is liquid heaven in the mouth, with excellent balance and flavors of roasted plums, black cherry, nutmeg and chocolate. This is pure, structured and outstanding from start to finish. Drink now or hold in a proper cellar for another 10 or 20 years. 100 cases made."

97 Points, Editors' Choice
Michael Schachner, Wine Enthusiast, Oct 1, 2012

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Casta Diva Fondillón (1999) - "100% Monastrell raised for eight years in barrique. Dark violet color. Pungent aromas of boysenberry, cherry compote, pipe tobacco and dried fig, with notes of dried flowers and smoky minerals adding complexity. Coats the palate with sweet dark berry flavors, picking up a bitter cherry skin note with air. Extremely concentrated and liqueur-like in its sweetness but there's a graceful, focused quality that's compelling. Finishes with lush dark berry notes and serious cling."

92 Points
Josh Raynolds, International Wine Cellar, Sep 1, 2009

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Casta Diva Fondillón (1997) - "Dense violet. Dark berries and candied plum on the nose, with notes of cured tobacco and espresso. Lush and moderately sweet, with fresh, chocolatey blackberry and boysenberry flavors framed by gentle acids and supple tannins. Finishes broad, quite sweet and very long, with an exotic Asian spice quality."

91 Points
Josh Raynolds, International Wine Cellar, Sep 1, 2006

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Casta Diva Fondillón (1996) - "Made from 100% Monastrell, [this wine] is a saturated purple, offering aromas of plums, prunes, and raisins. On the palate this intensely sweet wine remains slightly tight and tannic. It is reminiscent of an Italian Recioto. All of these wines should be consumed within 2-3 years of purchase."

92 Points
Jay Miller, Wine Advocate, Feb 1, 2007

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Casta Diva Fondillón (1996) - "A natural sweet wine from Monastrell) Ruby-red. Aromas of plum jam and smoky game. Very sweet but not at all thick, as the plum, black cherry, dark berry and spice flavors are framed and lifted by surprising acidity. Not particularly complex but aromatic, brisk and very easy to drink. Finishes with a fine dusting of tannins. "

90 Points
Stephen Tanzer, International Wine Cellar, Sep 1, 2005

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Casta Diva Fondillón (1996) - "This thick, moderately sweet red shows candied cherry, prune and chocolate flavors, with firm tannins and lively acidity. A bit rough around the edges, but has personality."

88 Points
Thomas Matthews, Wine Spectator Online, Jan 1, 2005

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Casta Diva Fondillón (1995) - "A sweet wine from monastrell. Full ruby-red. High-toned aromas of black raspberry and smoke. Supersweet, dense and thick, but kept fresh by nicely integrated acidity. The powerful cherry and dark berry flavors offer terrific concentration. Not at all porty or rustic. Finishes fresh and quite long. "

93 Points
Stephen Tanzer, International Wine Cellar, Sep 1, 2004

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Overview: Felipe Gutiérrez de la Vega and his wife Pilar opted for an early retirement and rustic mountain lifestyle, becoming fanatical for the ancient Moscatel vines, grown on terraces originally designed and planted by the Phoenicians overlooking the Mediterranean Sea in Alicante's Marina Alta.

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History: Marina Alta is located on the Cabo de la Nao promontory north of Benidorm, rising from the coastal towns of Jávea and Denia to nearly 3,000 feet above sea level. Southerly Mediterranean breezes leave their humidity on the southfacing slopes of the peninsular ranges, creating an insular, humid microclimate which coaxes a higher level of acidity and flavor from the produce of the region: exquisitely intense oranges and highly aromatic Muscat of Alexandria (here called Moscatel Romano despite the fact that it predates Roman settlement in the area). The Moscatel, grown in Marina Alta's ancient terraces of Greco-Roman origin, mirrors the orange's blossom in its bouquet.

Felipe Gutiérrez de la Vega founded his winery in 1987, installing modern winemaking equipment inside a converted mill in the remote mountain village of Parcent. Moscatel is the local specialty.

Among Spain's most distinctive wines is Casta Diva Cosecha Miel ("honey harvest"). Late-harvest Moscatel Romano is picked by individual bunch and delivered in small boxes to the bodega, where the free-run must is sent directly to new French and American oak barricas. After natural fermentation begins, fortification with neutral grape spirit is done gradually, by individual barrel. Natural sugar is retained while the alcohol level remains under 14%. Bottling is in late Spring, resulting in an elegant, ginger-spiced, honey-rich and tropically-intense nectar which ranks among the world's greatest examples of its type.

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Casta Diva Fondillón (1995)

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