Top 10 winemakers to watch in Spain

APPRENTICE: JORGE MONZÓN

Jorge-MonzonNominated by Peter Sisseck as a new bright light in Ribera del Duero, 35-year- old Jorge Monzón started at the top of the wine tree, cutting his teeth at Domaine de la Romanée-Conti in Burgundy and Vega Sicilia back home in Spain.

“At DRC, I got to live the wine every day. Aubert de Villaine has the same passion as a rookie just starting out, which was inspiring,” he says. In 2004, Monzón moved to Bodegas Arzuaga Navarra in Ribera where he worked with old vine Tempranillo and experimental plots of Petit Verdot and Syrah.

His new baby is Dominio del Aguila, based in the village of La Aguilera. Run by Monzón and his wife Isabel Rodero since 2010, Monzón works with 30 hectares of old organic vines and is dedicated to recovering old vineyard sites in the region.

His big dream is for pockets of Ribera to be recognised as “grand crus” for Tempranillo. “People come and go, and they are essential, but the land remains, so we must respect it and take care of it so many generations can enjoy it,” he says. Monzón takes a minimum intervention approach to winemaking, crushing grapes by foot.

Among his range is a reserva made with Tempranillo, Blanca del País, Garnacha and Bobal; and a gran reserva, aged for 40 months in French oak. He currently makes just 5,000 bottles of wine a year but hopes to up production to 20,000 bottles. As a side project, Monzón also makes a craft beer called Milagritos from malted barley and local hops.

One Response to “Top 10 winemakers to watch in Spain”

  1. nate houston says:

    How is Raul Perez not a part of this list???? Or Alberto Orte???

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