2014 Bodegas Vegalfaro Pago de los Belagueses Syrah, Vino de Pago, Spain
This red wine is made by Bodegas y Viñedos Vegalfaro from a vineyard that boasts its own appellation, its own DO (denominación de Origen) like the Spanish call them, a ‘D.O. de Pago’.
The Pago de los Belagueses is a vineyard surrounded by a pine forest, Holm oaks and aromatic plants, located in the Natural Park las Hoces in the province of Valencia city, just South of Barcelona on the Mediterranean Coast. The Pago was actually one of very first to the receive the VP (Vino de Pago) title in the area.
The soil here is calcareous-sandy.
On this vineyard, Vegalfaro grows the Syrah and Garnacha Tintorera grape varieties predominantly, in addition to a small plot of Merlot and Chardonnay.
Out of this DO de Page, come out 3 Vinos de Pago: the varietal Syrah reviewed here, another red made of Garnacha Tintorera + Merlot, and a white wine from Chardonnay.
So on paper, we are here with a bit of a special wine!
So how good is this 2014 Bodegas Vegalfaro Pago de los Belagueses Syrah?
The answer is in the tasting notes:
The wine is very dark, black in the center, purple red on the rim.
In 4 words, the nose is intense, warm, ripe, and spicy.
Powerful aromas of toasted coffee and prune liqueur jump out of the glass. Yet it’s deep and somewhat refined and sophisticated.
Dried fig, date, sweet cherry jam liqueur. Plenty of dried fruit and very sweet fruit notes in the profile, lifted by the warmth of the 14.5% alcohol.
Spices are aplenty: white pepper and clove leading. They’re complemented by deep herbal tones (laurel), a meaty character, and some earthy umami tones (cooked mushroom, soy sauce).
You’ve got the point: a complex, powerful and full-on nose.
The palate doesn’t disappoint from there, and actually seems to make more sense that the nose.
Rich dried fruit liqueur flavors upfront are joined by insanely-powerful toasted characters of roasted coffee and oak (vanilla, dark chocolate, charcoal). Flavors develop in order one after the other, respectfully of one another on the palate more than they were at smelling it.
Warm oily texture, quite low an acidity but still in good balance, dense tannic texture that is smooth and just positively bitter on the finish.
A Syrah wine with outstanding concentration filled with ripe fruit and good oak goodness.
It is definitely absolutely dry but feels and tastes so much like dried fruit, the oily texture with it too, that it gives the sensation of being made with raisins.
But the result is quite a unique tasting experience, with a mouthful of tannins and rich oily texture, yet with the elegance and somehow quite refined old-world style.
It’s not Aussie Shiraz, nowhere near, not the French Syrah either (whether that’d be Northern or Southern Rhone). Another rather unique expression of the grape as far What I’ve tasted is concerned.
If only for this, probably worth a try. Though as a big bold reds lover with a certain level of sophistication, I did enjoy it too…