"Marqués de Murrieta didn't produce their top red in 2008, so I tasted the 2009 Castillo Ygay Gran Reserva Especial. In 2009, the final blend was Tempranillo with 19% Mazuelo (or Cariñena), one of the highest percentages of Mazuelo ever. The grapes are now sourced from the La Plana vineyard within the Ygay estate, one of the higher-altitude plots at 485 meters. The grapes fermented and aged separately, the Tempranillo in American oak barrels and the Mazuelo in French barriques for 26 months, given its power. It has that seriousness, character and somehow rusticity of the Mazuelo, austere, harmonious and still young. It has good depth and concentration, still young and lively with fine tannins and a backbone of freshness that lifts it up. It will develop for a very long time in bottle. This is a great classical Rioja for the long haul. 109,000 bottles and some larger formats were produced. It was bottled in October 2014. The prices are increasing but so is the quality. The following vintages will be 2010, 2011 and possibly 2012. I cannot wait to taste them.." -Robert Parker
"Garnet without being tawny yet. Everything is integrated and very well done, so it clearly has a long life ahead. It holds the fruit intensity. Very promising. Its fine texture is great, with complexity and forest-floor sensations. Polished tannins over layers of fruit. It is young for a 10-year-old! It has not yet developed any tertiary notes. Amazing potential. I am moved by it!"
"2009 was a warm year, a good vintage to increase the Mazuelo component (up to 19%) in order to ensure balancing acidity next to the rich dark fruit. This has been successfully rendered, the tannins hitherto tight and fairly chalky, but the structure warm and embracing. Cassis and blackberry dominate the fruit profile, then black pepper, cloves and even a hint of cinnamon providing a spicy backdrop. The finish is powerful but does not want for elegance."
"Black cherry, plum, clove, cocoa and mineral flavors are rich and harmonious in this polished red. Well-integrated tannins and balsamic acidity keep this balanced. Shows focus and depth, but remains very fresh. Tempranillo and Mazuelo."