2010 Bodegas Volver "Tarima Hill" Monastrell Alicante
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The opaque purple-colored 2010 Tarima Hill exhibits notes of chocolate fudge, pen ink, graphite, blueberries and blackberries. This full-bodied, 100% Monastrell should drink well for a decade or more. These amazing efforts taste more like they should cost $30 to $50 as opposed to the mid-teens. Bodega Volver, a joint project between Rafael Canizares and Jorge Ordonez, produces wines from three appellations, La Mancha, Alicante and Jumilla. Readers will need to take note of the nearly identical cuvees, some of which are made from organic grapes and others from non-organic grapes. That information is clearly marked on the labels. Slightly more expensive are the 2010 and 2009 Tarima Hill. These cuvees come from the winery's oldest vines (20 acres of ungrafted vines that were planted in 1935) planted on the highest elevations.
Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar
Bright ruby. A highly perfumed nose displays cherry, raspberry, pipe tobacco and Asian spices. Juicy and precise on the palate, with very good depth to its sweet red berry, bitter cherry and spice flavors. Fine-grained tannins add shape and grip to a long, silky and alluringly sweet finish. This is one of the best values in red wine that I've tasted in a long time.
A fine value in old-vine Spanish wine, the "Tarima Hill" is 100 percent Monastrell (Mourvèdre). Volver's Tarima Hill vineyard is planted with 40-75 year old Monastrell (Mourvedre) vines which are pruned low to the ground and dry-farmed. These vines handle the wild summer day/night temperature swings and lack of rainfall beautifully. The Alicante region is less famous than some other regions in Spain such as Rioja, but its grape growing history dates back to Roman times, and probably as far back as the earliest eras of recorded history.