We have stocked the wonderful Toro wines of winemaker Beatriz Paniagua, Eternum Viti and Los Colmillos, for nearly 5 and were intrigued when we discovered she had a new offering made from 100% Graciano. This is a grape we have not really seen by itself, normally it is blended with others. We had to try it and boy are we glad we did. Deep ruby-red with violet rim in colour. Mature red fruit and liquorice with an elegant mineral touch with spice and toastiness on the nose. The palate is fruity and balanced, with good structure, sweet but firm tannins and a spicy note on the finish. Making a spicy lamb Tagine then this would be the perfect partner. It is an immensely enjoyable wine, full of concentration and big, bold fruit. Tierra Fuerte (Strong Land) aptly describes this region south of
Madrid, Méntrida,  where the earth yields little and the climate is extreme. Only the brave survive!

Méntrida is a DO in the northeast corner of the province of Toledo (Castile-La Mancha, Spain).  Méntrida produces mainly red wines as the red grape variety Garnacha represents over 80% of the grapes planted. The is made up of Cencibel (local name for Tempranillo), Graciano and the usual international varieties Cab. Sauv. Shiraz etc. There is also a very small amount of white produced. Graciano is a native Spanish variety, planted in very small amounts all over Spain due to its low yields. It is used in small amounts in  Rioja to add deeper aromatics and compliment the ageing qualities of Tempranillo.  Wines of 100% Graciano tend to have spicy liquorice notes with good structure and body.