Grapes: 100% Tinta de Toro
During the winter, there was prolonged drought with little rainfall from October to March and no frosts. Well distributed rain in April and May and a warm summer with scarce water reserves in the plants allowed for harvest to begin on September 12th with excellent ripeness and low yields per hectare.
The wine is austere but intriguing with its aromatic range with predominating notes of earth, licorice and spices. It unfolds with dynamism and liveliness on the palate, well-integrated oak and succulent tannins. San Roman 2012 was bottled in March 2015 after 24 months in French and American oak barrels both new and used.
View from the Cellar
The San Román bottling from Bodegas Maurodos is comprised entirely of tempranillo, which here is known as Tinta do Toro, with the vines ranging from sixty to ninety years of age. The wine is raised in a mixture of French and American barricas, with fifty percent of the casks renewed each year, and the 2012 San Román tips the scales at 14.5 percent alcohol. The wine is quite modern in style, but done beautifully in its idiom, offering up a deep and complex nose of black cherries and plums, mocha, discreet spice tones, a touch of coffee grounds and a nice blend of vanilla and coconutty oak tones. On the palate the wine is deep, full-bodied, focused and plush on the attack, with a sappy core of fruit, firm tannins and very good length and grip on the suave and ever so slightly hot finish. As readers know, this is not a style that resonates with me and the wine has to be really well done to score highly, but the 2012 San Román from Bodegas Maurodos is really that well-crafted. I would love to see this wine at fourteen percent octane, as it would be spectacular if just a little less ripe, but even at this octane, it is superb juice. 2016-2030+. Issue Sixty-One January-February 2016
(aged for two years in a combination of French and American oak barrels, half of them new): Bright violet color. Sexy, spice-accented dark berry and violet pastille scents are complemented by notes of candied licorice, vanilla and woodsmoke. An undercurrent of smoky minerality gives lift and focus to the juicy blackberry and bitter cherry flavors, which become spicier and sweeter with air. The spicy quality carries through a sharply focused, subtly tannic, very long finish. 2020–2025 Central Spain: Tempranillo and Beyond
The Wine Advocate
The 2012 San Román is produced with the fruit of their older vines out of their 96 hectares of vineyards in Toro. They have reduced the amount of the new oak here. The aromas are very mineral of red clay, iron, a mixture of plums, black and red cherries and again something earthy, elegant and complex, developing meaty notes with time. The palate is medium to full-bodied, fresher than 2011, with very fine tannins and very good acidity. This is a superb version of San Román. This is one of the few wines from Toro that actually improves with time in bottle. 93,000 bottles were filled in March 2015. Issue 221, October 2015
Wine Review Online
This is one of the finest young renditions of San Roman that I’ve ever tasted, and that is really saying something, as this is my single favorite of all the wines of Toro (despite the fact that it is not the most expensive). The color remains strikingly dark at three years of age, with very concentrated pigmentation that suggests the wine will -- when tasted -- prove to be hard at best and impenetrable at worst. But that isn’t what happens at all. Far less overtly oaky than some earlier renditions of this wine that I’ve tasted, it is already showing an uncanny combination of succulence and structure, with dark cherry and berry fruit that displays great power but also a purity and tenderness that permits immediate enjoyment if the wine is aerated and paired with (even moderately) robust food. This will develop in positive ways for a full decade, and savory accents are already emerging around the edges, but it is already completely convincing. November 24, 2015 Issue
The polished texture masks depth and muscle in this powerful red. Shows blackberry, anise, tar and mineral flavors, with spicy and floral highlights. Firm tannins and fresh acidity lend good balance. Expressive, in an austere way. Drink now through 2027. August 31, 2016 Issue #26 Wine Spectator Top 100 wines of 2016