Category-Shattering Dueros: The Return of Alfredo Maestro Tejero

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Alfredo Maestro Tejero was celebrated in our pre-sale last year as "A Magician in the Duero" for elevating the integrity of his appellation while eschewing its label. A native of Peñafiel, the heart of Ribera del Duero, Maestro started planting vines, buying grapes, and making wine in 1998. He played by the rules of modern oenology, but soon learned that truly expressive and original wines are only achieved through natural practices and minimal intervention in the vines and cellar: no synthetic chemicals, biodynamics "sin fanatismo," and no added sulfur during elevage (except at bottling for export). He chooses freedom over branding, working under the broader Castilla y León indication in order to pursue vines outside the limits of the Ribera D.O.

The plateau surrounding the Duero River offers prodigious altitudes, limestone outcrops, and alluvial terroirs that are well-suited to the growth of Tempranillo (Tinto Fino or Tinta del País, locally). This is a sensitive variety with relatively modest acidity that needs reduced yields, ample elevation, and gentle treatment in the cellar in order to achieve balance in the bottle. International hype encouraged a generation of Dueros marked by excessive oak and extraction; Maestro's Tempranillos lift the shroud of style, revealing the vitality that lies beneath. Natural without feeling wild, they speak clearly of the enduring commitment to organic farming and no-nonsense winemaking that allow the fruit of varied vines to sing of origin with energy and ease.

An outstanding skin-contacted white from 102-year-old Albillo vines, as well as a Garnacha-based blend from Maestro's outpost near Madrid round out this offering. We are lucky to have received a bit more wine this year, but quantities are still limited. Allocations are noted in item descriptions. -AR

 

 

 

 

No Longer Available

Maestro Tejero, Alfredo 2010 Vdt Castilla y Leon Terruños del Duero

Terruños is a blend of Alfredo's two single vineyards: precise and structured, calcareous-laced, black cherry fruit of Olmera complemented by the broad, floral, sarsparilla root depth of Guindalera. Subtle scents of tar and toffee, strawberry seeds, tart cherry skins, blackberry stems, hibiscus, black tea and bark. The palate is small black plums and strawberries reduced with Pinot Noir; cinnamon oil, cola, and savory chocolate follow with soft leather and licorice length.  Pretty fruit meets handsome angles. Feel free to decant. -cb/AR

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • $28.99

Maestro Tejero, Alfredo 2010 Vdt Castilla y Leon La Guindalera

This is the most fascinating of Maestro's wines, to be shared with thoughtful friends. Richer, deeper, and more mysterious than delicate Olmera, Guindalera comes from a single vineyard of 15-year-old Tinto Fino (Tempranillo) vines. Alluring aromas of blackberry briar, pencil shavings, buckwheat pancakes, lavender, lilac, and chocolate truffles dusted in cocoa. Guindalera's flavors are elusive and pure: mullberry, choke cherries, gingerbread, root beer, nutmeg, gentle bitter herbs, and raspberry iced tea. Broad clay earth and crumpled-paper tannins ground the palate and promise a long life in the bottle. Pairs well with braises, eggplant, aged cheddars, and La Olmera. Tempranillo is finally at peace. (Quantities are extremely limited. Please allow 2 bottles per person.) -AR

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • $41.99

Maestro Tejero, Alfredo 2010 Madrid La Vinuela

La Vinuela is equal parts Garnacha and Tempranillo from old vines at 830 meters altitude in Navalcarnero, south and west of Madrid. Purple in the glass and funky on the nose, with notes of smoked pork, celery, black currant, pumpernickel, Kalamata olives, and aged Mahon. Umami and jasmine tea run into dark red raspberries and prosciutto swathed in leather, clove, crunchy black pepper, and smoked salt. A potent outlier and perfect match for serious BBQ, spicy chili, and anything involving bacon. -AR

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • $29.99

Maestro Tejero, Alfredo 2011 Vdt Castilla y Leon Lovamor

This is a cool blonde pool of viscous fruit and sultry herbs. Mostly Albillo (with a touch of Doña Blanca and Malvasía Riojana) from 102-year-old vines just outside of Ribera del Duero. Aromas of peach and pear, wheat beer with coriander, orange zest, fresh thyme, pink peppercorn, licorice root, sour apple, banana chips and salty butter. A week of skin contact provides supple weight in the mouth and a toned tannic core for its citrus oils, zingy zests, warm spice, and orchard-full of ripe pear skins and flesh. The finish goes on for minutes. An intriguing alternative to Lopez Gravonia, this will be stellar with pork chops, veal, fried chicken, or a plate of raw milk cheeses. Go crazy for Lovamor! (2 bottle limit per person please.) -AR

  • Out of Stock
  • white
  • 0 in stock
  • $29.99

Maestro Tejero, Alfredo 2011 Vdt Castilla y Leon Vina Almate

Formerly from single vineyard, young vine Tempranillo in Penafiel, Almate now features 80-year-old vines from just down the road in Valtiendas. Aromas of boysenberry sap, bing cherry liqueur, sweet baking chocolate, oregano, black pepper, just-baked bread, and warm earth meld with supremely juicy fruit and a silty, pleasingly unfiltered texture on the tongue: sweet raspberry-currant, lemon balm, wild roses with short tannic thorns, and a subtle trickle of coffee on the pure, almost mineral finish. An insanely plush and precocious entry level cuvee. -AR

 

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • $16.99

Maestro Tejero, Alfredo 2010 Vdt Castilla y Leon La Olmera

Upon first tasting La Olmera, I thought it was the prettiest Spanish red ever to enter my glass. Nearly two years later, this sentiment persists. Rose water and cherry blossom scents start faint but grow deep as the nose opens into Darjeeling tea, balsamic cherry preserves, and sun-soaked sand. Abundant acid excites the palate; ethereal black cherry mist fills the mouth and throat before settling into cocoa nibs, dill fronds, tarragon-tinged tannin and delicate gravelly dust. 100% Tinto Fino (Tempranillo) from a single vineyard planted in 1986. Although the two wines are very different, I highly recommend Olmera to lovers of Lafarge Passetoutgrain. Open Olmera well in advance, if possible. Tannins are terrifically terse. -AR

  • Out of Stock
  • red
  • 0 in stock
  • $41.99