Maximo de Arrocal

"showy, with intoxicating aromas of blueberries and violets. The palate is full-bodied, with nerve and acidity, and is lively...Big and ripe, a great example of powerful Ribera." —
Luis Gutiérrez, Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Appellation
Ribera del Duero D.O.
Grape(s)
100% Tinto Fino (Tempranillo), from the single, El Portillo vineyard, planted in 1937
Altitude/Soil
850 meters / Lime rich calcareous clay
Farming Methods
Practicing Organic
Harvest
Hand harvested from the small 4.5 hectare vineyard into small boxes
Production
After cluster sorting the grapes are destemmed and lightly crushed, fermentation with native yeasts in temperature controlled SS
Aging
Aged for 26 months in French Radoux blend oak barrels, 100% new, limited to 1,500 bottles/vintage
Suggested Retail Price
$115
Wine Name
Scores
Downloads
Reviews
Maximo de Arrocal 2010
93 (WS) 93 (VM) 93 (WE) 92 (RP)
Score Publication Review Copy
93 Wine Spectator This aromatic red shows balsamic, hoisin and fig paste notes, with mulled plum, coffee, tobacco and meaty flavors that mingle over muscular tannins. Big and bold, in a savory style. Drink now through 2025. 100 cases made.
Sep 30, 2016
93 Vinous Media (malo in new French oak barriques, followed by 14 months of aging in another set of new barrels): Bright purple. Expansive spice- and smoke-accented black and blue fruits and cherry-cola on the highly perfumed nose. Sweet and seamless on the palate, offering intense blackcurrant and floral pastille flavors and building vanilla and mocha notes. Velvety tannins arrive late to give structure and gentle grip to a long, dark fruit-dominated finish, which leaves a smoky mineral note behind. From a single plot of 70+-year-old vines.
December 2015
93 The Wine Enthusiast This cool, minty, dark specimen smells deeply of chocolate and blackberry. In the mouth, this is saturated to the max, just like the wine's name implies. Flavors of toast, dark chocolate and black fruits finish with coffee notes and a blast of oaky chocolate. This is delicious but still fierce. Drink from 2018 through 2030.
Cellar Selection; Feb. 2017
92 The Wine Advocate I was pleasantly impressed by the 2010 Máximo de Arrocal , pure Tempranillo from a vineyard planted some 60 years ago and named El Portillo. Despite the fact that the wine matured in French barrique for 26 months, the nose is not too oaky; there are earthier tones with hints of peat, graphite and even some mineral, diesel-like hints. Heady, ripe and concentrated, the tannins are quite fine and the acidity is moderate. Powerful, ripe but with certain restraint. 1,000 bottles were filled in April 2013.
Issue 221, Oct. 2015
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Maximo de Arrocal 2014
95 - Gold (DEC) 94+ (VfC) 91 (RP)
Score Publication Review Copy
95 - Gold Decanter World Wine Awards Elegant perfumed nose of rich black cherries and plums, framed by sweet spices and creamy vanilla. Full-bodied on the palate with a rich lush concentration of fruit.
Gold Medal
2019 Decanter World Wine Awards
94+ View from the Cellar The 2014 vintage of the Máximo bottling from Bodegas Arrocal is their top of the line cuvée, made from seventy-five year-old vines in a prime section of the El Portillo Vineyard. Interestingly, though the 2014 is again raised all in new French barrels, the winery has cut back on the new oak, as the 2011 version I tasted last year had been racked from ne barrels into new casks again, à la Dominique Laurent and had used his recipe of “two hundred percent new oak”. The 2014 Máximo was aged in all new French oak for twenty-six months, but at least the racking was not done into another set of new barrels and the wine is much less woody as a result. The bouquet is deep, complex and very refined, wafting from the glass in a mix of black cherries, plums, raw cocoa, a nice touch of Cuban cigar wrapper, a lovely dollop of soil tones and a really well done framing of spicy and nutty French oak. On the palate the wine is pure, full-bodied and elegant, with lovely complexity, excellent depth at the core, well-measured tannins and excellent length and grip on the very well-balanced finish. I would still love this wine even more in fifty percent new oak, but the wood here is already integrating beautifully and the wine carries it very well indeed. This is first class juice. 2020-2050.
Issue #75 – May/June 2018
91 The Wine Advocate The top of the range, the 2014 Máximo is an homage to the first generation and is produced with grapes from half a hectare of El Portillo vineyard, one of the oldest vineyards in the village. It was planted with a majority of Tempranillo balanced by some 10% Garnacha and 5% white grapes that are all picked and fermented together. It matured in French oak barrels for 26 months. It seems to have some old-vine concentration and clout, and the oak feels less intrusive than other bottlings. There are ripe berries, spices and a full-bodied palate with tannins and concentration and an earthy, dusty finish. Better with powerful food. 1,000 bottles were filled in March 2017.
August 2018 - Issue 238
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Maximo de Arrocal 2015
95 (VfC) 94 (VM)
Score Publication Review Copy
95 View from the Cellar The Maximo bottling from Bodegas Arrocal is also a single vineyard bottling from old vines, as this wine hails from the vineyard of El Portillo and the Tempranillo here is eighty-five years of age! The vines are farmed organically, the vineyard sits at eight hundred and sixty meters above sea level and the soils are clay and limestone. The wine is fermented with indigenous yeasts, undergoes malo in barrel and is raised for twenty-six months in Radoux French oak cask prior to bottling. As this is from the warmer summer of 2015, it is a touch riper than the 2016 Angel Tinto, coming in at 14.5 percent alcohol. The wine offers up a deep and nascently complex bouquet of plums, dark berries, Cuban cigar wrapper, chocolate, a nice touch of Tempranillo spice tones, smoke and new oak. On the palate the wine is deep, full-bodied and shows off lovely old vine creaminess in the mid-palate, with excellent focus and grip, budding complexity and a very long, suavely tannic and impeccably balanced finish. I like the oak signature of this wine, which is both nutty and spicy at the same time, without being overbearing to the stunning fruit here. This is a gorgeous wine, but like the Angel Tinto, I have a gut feeling that there is still another level up in quality this wine could go if it were given the Petrus treatment of only fifty percent new oak and malo in tank, to allow even more soil signature to shine through. That said, this is still brilliant wine! 2030-2080.
John Gilman - Issue #91 / February 2021
94 Vinous Media Vivid ruby-red. An explosively perfumed bouquet evokes fresh red and blue fruits, cherry liqueur, candied flowers and spicecake, and incense and vanilla notes build in the glass. Stains the palate with sappy, densely packed boysenberry and cherry-vanilla flavors that show a suave seamless texture and a jolt of energizing acidity. The floral note repeats emphatically on a strikingly long, smooth, subtly tannic finish that shows wonderful detail. Raised in new French oak barrels for 26 months. 2022 – 2032
Josh Raynolds - February 2021
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Maximo de Arrocal 2016
97 (WRO) 95 (VfC) 93 (WS)
Score Publication Review Copy
97 Wine Review Online This is an obviously great wine, showing impressive density but also intricate detail and marvelous integration immediately after the cork is pulled. All of those attributes blossom even more as the wine opens with air, actually seeming to take on additional palate weight even as its tannins soften and the aromas and flavors broaden and blossom. There’s considerable oak in the mix, but it never really shows as a distinct element, but rather as a source of spicy, toasty aromatic accents and flavor undercurrents. The fruit is so abundant that the combination of grape and wood tannins never becomes notably astringent, though this certainly calls for enjoyment with food in the years immediately ahead. I have no doubt that it will improve for a full 15 years from now, and then likely hold at that level for an additional span. This is not mere guesswork on my part, but rather a reliable extrapolation from its rock-solid stability from an open bottle over three consecutive days. At $115, this is obviously a luxury purchase, but the wine’s performance places it very near the apex of worldwide wine quality, at which point it offers more sheer beauty than almost anything sold for less than $150.
Michael Franz - May 18, 2021
95 View from the Cellar The Máximo bottling from Bodegas Arrocal is also a single vineyard bottling from old vines, as this wine hails from the vineyard of El Portillo and the Tempranillo here is eighty-five years of age! The vines are farmed organically, the vineyard sits at eight hundred and sixty meters above sea level and the soils are clay and limestone. The wine is fermented with indigenous yeasts, undergoes malo in barrel and is raised for twenty-six months in Radoux French oak cask prior to bottling. The 2016 Máximo is a touch riper than the 2016 Ángel bottling, coming in at 14.5 percent alcohol. The wine offers up a deep and nascently complex bouquet of plums, dark berries, Cuban cigar wrapper, chocolate, a nice touch of Tempranillo spice tones, smoke and new oak. On the palate the wine is deep, full-bodied and shows off lovely old vine creaminess in the mid-palate, with excellent focus and grip, budding complexity and a very long, suavely tannic and impeccably balanced finish. I like the oak signature of this wine, which is both nutty and spicy at the same time, without being overbearing to the stunning fruit here. This is a gorgeous wine, but like the Ángel Tinto, I have a gut feeling that there is still another level up in quality this wine could go if it were given the Pétrus treatment of only fifty percent new oak and malo in tank, to allow even more soil signature to shine through. That said, this is still brilliant wine! 2030-2080.
John Gilman - Issue #92 March/April 2021
93 Wine Spectator This generous red is broad and dense, with berry compote, steeped cherry, espresso and loamy earth notes supported by suave tannins. Rich elements of mocha and licorice echo on the creamy finish. Drink now through 2033. 150 cases made, 30 cases imported.
Gillian Sciaretta – September 30, 2021
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