Bodega Teso La Monja Almirez Review | Tantalizing Toro
If you’re a looking for rich, layered, broad-shouldered wines at bargain prices, dare I suggest a tangle with this bull? The Toro Bravo, or Spanish fighting bull, is prized for its aggression and stamina. Oddly enough, the wines of the Spanish Toro appellation share similar characteristics – yet us wine lovers can rejoice in that they don’t share quite the same level of notoriety as the venerable Toro Bravo.
A few years ago, I read an e-mail advertisement for the 2011 Bodega Teso La Monja Almirez touting a huge 94 point Parker score. The review was nothing short of glowing, even going so far as to say that “At this quality level, one would expect the price to be three digits or more.”
How could a wine costing well under $20 garner such accolades? I was pretty skeptical, but equally curious so I ordered a few bottles to investigate further. When I tasted the wine, I was blown away. The review was in no way exaggerated. It was spot on. Yet I never got around to blogging about just how compelling the Teso La Monja Almirez was, so I’m making things right with this review of the 2012 vintage.
Appearance: A deep shade of garnet red.
Nose: The nose is bold and fragrant revealing generous aromas of violets, black raspberry, black cherry, and cassis. Hints of vanilla, smoke and graphite add further complexity.
On the palate: Medium to full-bodied, the Teso La Monja Almirez is bold and modern in style, yet maintains excellent balance and never feels heavy or cloying on the palate. Layers of creme de cassis, black raspberry, blackberry and plum unfold at the core. Grounding the fruit are nuances of smoke, embers, graphite, licorice and subtle cocoa. Benefiting from incredible purity, a distinctive undercurrent of minerality and powder fine tannin structure, it’s hard to believe such an elegantly textured wine can be had for so little money.
Varietal Composition: Tempranillo
Origin: Toro, Spain
Value Rating: 5 / 5
Where I got it: Winecrasher
Price: $14.99 (widely available under $20)
Should you buy? Absolutely. The Teso La Monja Almirez Toro is impossibly good for the money. Benefiting from incredible purity, a distinctive undercurrent of minerality and powder fine tannin structure, it’s hard to believe such an elegantly textured wine can be had for so little money.
Value Proposition – Bodegas Teso La Monja Almirez Toro 2012 Review
If you’re as skeptical after reading my review of the Teso La Monja Almirez as I was when I read Parker’s review, you should be. I mean, how could anybody as particular as me be so excited about a $15 wine? Well I beg you not to take my word for it. Don’t be bullheaded, give the Teso La Monja Almirez a shot! I’m betting you’ll thank me later.
No doubt. There are some phenomenal wines coming out of Spain right now; at some phenomenal prices. And while I’m always skeptical of Parker (I mean this wine is good, but compared to other 94 pt wines is it just as good? Anyway, I digress) , he’s not wrong that there’s stuff worth drinking here. If you like this one, be sure to try just about anything from Jorge Ordonez, a great Spanish wine importer that has a knack for finding and helping to craft some really great wines at reasonable prices.
Thanks for the heads up – will have to look for Jorge’s wines.