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I have been searching for a wine to rival Vega-Sicilia for many years. £27 compared with upwards of £125!

If you love top Rioja and Bordeaux you will love this wine

Ribera del Duero is home to the legendary producer, Vega Sicilia, whose top wines 'Unico' and 'Riserva Especial' sell upwards of £200 to £300 a bottle. Even their second wine, Valbuena, sells at £125 a bottle! When you get wines like this that dominate, a bit like Sassicaia in Italy, like a self-fulfilling prophecy they just become more and more expensive.

At some point there has to come another wine that is as good, but costs less. We think we might have found it. I say 'may', as I don't want to make a grand claim, but there's no doubt this wine is 1) made with more care than Vega Sicilia, 2) vinified in smaller batches 3) made with natural yeasts 4)is unfiltered 5) is beautiful. 
 
Vega Sicilia's Unico production is now up to 90,000 bottles, (in the 1980s it was 6,000 bottles) and their second wine is 150,000 bottles. With this kind of production you have to be less discriminate in the vineyards, and compromise and strip the wine of some of its character in order to get homogeneity. At some point you have to decide when to jump off the bandwagon.

I once pulled over in car to have a photo in Vega-Sicilia's hallowed vineyard, and as I got to the third row of vines I heard gun shots. I hopped back in the car and didn't stop again for miles. These guys take themselves seriously. Vega Sicilia has been the big shot round here since they got their reputation by being served in all the Spanish embassies around the world since the early 1900s.

Ribera del Duero can come in different shapes and sizes - it can be round, fruity, rich and oaky, or can be more like this - lovely intensity, depth and concentration, yet classical finesse and balance. 

This wine is just 6,000 bottles and comes from only the high altitude site  vineyards; a mix of limestone, sand and clay. 
Valdepila de Milenico 2015
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