My goal today was to introduce you to a new wine grape. As you all know I like finding things that are new and possibly interesting. Today’s grape is Prieto Picudo and I want to know all there is to know about it. So in the modern age we all jump onto Google, type in the name and away we go to information galore. Well most of the time. Turns out I’m not the only one discovering this grape. It seems that there are lots of sites out there describing this grape as interesting, native to León in Spain, and a possible future star to watch out for. But that is about it. What I can tell you from my searching is that it’s an easily identifiable grape from it’s small cone shaped clusters, and deep purple/blue coloring. It also comes in two varieties, one with oval shaped fruit and the other, better for making wine, with spherical fruit. It is grown mainly in the region of León where it has seen a recent revival with new money being put towards reviving this almost extinct grape.
What I can tell you from my personal experience is that I want to know more. This past weekend I tried a wine from Bodegas Frenández Llamazares called: Tinto Pajares. Hailing from León, Spain, it is made from 100% Prieto Picudo, and it made me and my guests excited by what we tasted. In truth I’ve had a few rose versions of this grape and while interesting I didn’t think much more about them. That is until I had this:
- 2000 Bodegas Fernandez Llamazares, Tinto Pajares, Prieto Picudo, Vinedos Propios – Spain, León, Vino de la Tierra (11/5/2005)
Deep rich ruby red color. The nose at first is quite earthy and opens in to a mix of minerals, wood, rosemary/mint, raspberry, and chocolate. Med body with strong tannins, med-strong acidity, and a palate drying finish. With time it reveals, raspberry, sour cherry, earth and chocolate. It is much bigger than I expected and next time I would decant it for an hour or so. The structure is there for short to mid length aging. I look forward to trying more of these wines.
I was really impressed with the depth of this wine, and looking back how the herbal notes combined with the earth and fruit it really showed me that there is potential in them thar grapes! With a little research, OK a lot of research, I was able to find one example of Prieto Picudo in the US, albeit a blend. Dehesa de Rubiales Aliai, 2002
seems to retail from 10-16 us dollars. Outside of the US, there are many more options, just make sure to ask your local wine merchant.
In fact let’s do this, if you read on this site an article about a new varietal or style of wine that is rare and are able to find it in your area, email me at: ryan (at) catavino (dot) net. When I start to get some suggestions I’ll post them to a special page where people can go to find some of these rarer varietals. Maybe we can help spread the word about new grapes!
Till soon, Ryan Opaz
BODEGAS FERNÃƒÂNDEZ LLAMAZARES S.L. (Elaborador / Embotellador)
Persona de Contacto: D. Julio Cesar Fernández Santos.
CAMINO VALDEPERALES S/N 24209 PAJARES DE LOS OTEROS (LEÓN)
Telf y fax: 987 75 20 25
Pajares Rosado Prieto Picudo
Pajares Tinto Roble Prieto Picudo
Pajares Tinto doce meses