2016 is an extraordinary vintage for Dominio del Águila, and the 2016 Pícaro del Águila Clarete is their finest to date. Their flagship "clarete" is produced with a blend of white and red grapes (35% Tempranillo, 35% Albillo and the rest of mixed varieties). They recovered this ancestral style of wine in the zone of Aranda de Duero, produced with grapes from very old organically farmed vineyards where there are a lot of varieties mixed in the field (Garnacha, Bobal, Bruñal, Monastrell, Tempranillo Gris, other Albillos, Garnacha Blanca, Pirulés, Jaén, Moscatel, Malvasías...), and they all fermented together with Tempranillo and the white Albillo to create what they describe as "a wine that is not a rosé and has aromas of white and the spirit of a red." The clusters are pressed directly and the must settles in concrete in their ancient caves, then it ferments slowly (over eight to nine months) in oak barrels, where the wine matured for a total of 17 months. This is a wine that ages magnificently in bottle, and together with the rosé from López de Heredia (that technically is also a "clarete"), these are the two most characterful and best pink wines produced in Spain today. This 2016 in particular could be the freshest and closer to a white, with citrus notes and a vibrant palate, and the oak is better integrated than ever. 9,830 bottles and 190 magnums were filled in February 2018.
94 Pts Luis Gutierrez, Robert Parker