Silk & Spice given Best Buy status for 3rd year in a row!


Silk & Spice gives us plenty of reasons to discover, and this smooth red blend has been discovered once again by Wine Enthusiast! Silk & Spice 2016′ vintage has now received 90 points and Best Buy status 3 years in a row – on all 3 vintages – and Wine Enthusiast has just announced its placement as number 15 in its top 100 Best Buys of 2018!


Download the Wine Enthusiast review here.


This review can be seen in Wine Enthusiast November 2018 issue.


Five wines from Montecillo’s range obtained excellent scores at the latest Spanish Wine tasting conducted by the internationally recognized journalist and wine critic

Fuenmayor, Rioja Alta. August 2018.

Five wines from the century-old winery in Rioja Alta, Montecillo, shine with international recognition by obtaining 90 points and over at the latest tasting conducted by one of the most influential wine critics worldwide – James Suckling.

The American writer, who gained international recognition through publications like Wine Spectator and Forbes, has recently published the ranking of the best Spanish wines at JamesSuckling.com. During their stay in Spain last June, the digital publication’s team tasted and classified over 2600 wine samples.

The 100-point based system only classifies as exceptional those wines with 90 points or more. Of the 6000+ existing wine brands from D.O.Ca. Rioja, 750 were tasted by the panel; the Rioja wines that obtained 90 points and over represented 20% of the total wine sample. One of the wines distinguished was Montecillo Crianza 2015, which obtained 91 points and was described as “soft and round-textured with a delicious finish.”

Four other wines within the Montecillo range obtained 90 points, confirming once more the winery’s high-quality winemaking credentials. Bodegas Montecillo’s winemaking philosophy is based on the careful selection of the very best grapes and providing a longer aging period to each wine compared to the region’s average – conferring the optimum roundness for each wine before their market release.

The online publication also highlighted the “…perfumed watermelon and light strawberries…” of Montecillo Rosé 2017; as well as the “assertive dark fruit and very rich array of smooth tannins…” of Montecillo Gran Reserva 2010 and the “dark, spicy notes as well as dried blueberries and cassis…with a sinewy thread of tannin with earthy and dark-fruit flavors…” of Montecillo Edición Limitada 2012. The notes also drew attention to “plenty of oak played into ultra-ripe fruit with dense tannins that carry plenty of dried fruit and currant flavors” of Montecillo 22 Barricas 2010 – a wine crafted in extremely limited quantities as a tribute to the winemaking technique of the winery’s founder Celestino Navajas.


About Bodegas Montecillo

Bodegas Montecillo is the oldest winery of Fuenmayor in Rioja Alta and the third-oldest bodega in the entire D.O.Ca. Rioja, the very first wine region in Spain to obtain the status of Qualified Denomination of Origin.

More than 140 years after its foundation, its winemaking philosophy remains untouched: crafting contemporary wines that stay true to their classic roots, a meticulous selection of the best varietals, and an artisanal aging process in French and American oak barrels along with further bottle-aging in order to deliver quality coherence and consistency vintage after vintage.

Its story dates back to the second half of the 19th Century, when a handful of enthusiasts, with a determined belief in Bordeaux winemaking methods, started crafting wines with the intention of transcending the limits of the national market. One of the first to do so was Don Celestino Navajas Matute, from a family with deep historical roots in Fuenmayor, who founded the winery in 1874. Don Celestino showed great vision sending his son, Alejandro, to study in Bordeaux; in time, he and his brother Gregorio went on to create the company Hijos de Celestino Navajas. The following generation, in the form of Alejandro´s son José Luis Navajas, studied oenology in Burgundy and Penedés. In 1943, he became the manager of the family winery, and drove the quality and success of its wines by introducing new innovative techniques in Rioja such as cold fermentation.

José Luis Navajas had no descendants and decided to place his ancestor’s legacy in the best possible hands. This is how he established a relationship with another family with a long winemaking tradition, Osborne, who acquired Montecillo in 1973.

Since then, Osborne has fostered the great strengths of the Fuenmayor winery – quality, tradition and know-how – by building new, more spacious and functional facilities between the towns of Fuenmayor and Navarrete. These winemaking facilities were conceived for meticulous winemaking and for crafting age-worthy wines – the true hallmark of the winery’s name. Its commitment to excellence and passion for quality and specialization have turned Montecillo into a reference for Gran Reservas and long-cellaring Riojas. Its walls treasure an artisanal underground cellar where hundreds of thousands of bottles are individually hand-piled with unequalled precision and stability. There, surrounded by darkness, calm and mystery, the wines of Montecillo are laid down to achieve greatness. Years gone by will turn them into Gran Reservas, and they will be called forth to perpetuate the legend behind an everlasting name: Montecillo.


About James Suckling

James Suckling is one of today’s leading wine critics whose reviews are read and respected by wine lovers, serious wine collectors, and the wine trade worldwide. He is CEO/Editor of JamesSuckling.com, the wine media platform and events company with offices in Hong Kong and Bangkok.

Since starting his career, Suckling estimates he has tasted close to 200,000 wines. This year he and his small team of tasters, including Australian Nick Stock in Melbourne, Brit Stuart Pigott in Berlin, and son Jack Suckling in Bangkok, tasted more than 16,000 wines in 2017.

JamesSuckling.com tries to taste all of the wines in their respective country of origin and spends months each year traveling the globe and setting up tastings, visiting wineries and talking to winemakers. JamesSuckling.com currently has more than 600,000 unique visitors to its website per year. Further information at: JamesSuckling.com

Montecillo® is a registered brand of Bodegas Montecillo. Enjoy Montecillo wines responsibly.

Social media channels:

Facebook: @BodegasMontecillo

Twitter: @VinoMontecillo

Instagram: @BodegasMontecillo

YouTube: www.youtube.com/c/BodegasMontecillo


[email protected]


Further information and/or imagery available upon request

Sogrape 75th Anniversary

2017 was the commemoration of Sogrape’s 75th anniversary!

A celebration took place with friends and family all over the world, to honor all who have created and developed the dream of Sogrape’s founder.

When Fernando Van Zeller Guedes started Sogrape back in 1942, he surely couldn’t have imagined a world-wide celebration, whose sole purpose was to toast – in person-  this milestone.

Sogrape has shared with us this moving video recap. Enjoy!


Check out this silky & spicy, full-page spotlight in May’s Wine Enthusiast!

In addition to picking up the magazine (it’s on page 127), please download the high-res file to print and share away this fantastic piece of coverage.

Download PDF

Note that the 90 pts / Best Buy rating recently received on the 2015 vintage will appear in Wine Enthusiast’s June issue.

Happy exploring.

Montecillo Gran Reserva 2009 has received two fantastic ratings!


A silky, supple texture carries modest but harmonious flavors of cherry, tobacco, leather and spice, supported by light tannins and balsamic acidity. Focused, in the traditional style. Drink now through 2019. 29,000 cases made.
–TM, Wine Spectator

The Wine Enthusiast review will appear in the July issue of the magazine.

Gran Reserva 2009 Tech Sheet

Also spread the word that Montecillo Gran Reserva will be poured at the Wine Spectator Grand Tour next month, in Las Vegas, Chicago and Miami. This will be a great opportunity to taste the wine and meet Montecillo Brand Ambassador Valeria Morado. This will be the second year in a row Montecillo was selected to pour at this invite-only event, reserved for top-scoring wines.

Did you know?

  • Montecillo means “little mountain/hill” in Spanish. The name honors the first terroirs the original winemakers planted in the Rioja Alta, back in 1874.
  • Montecillo is the third oldest (second in Rioja Alta) of more than 600 wineries in Rioja.  Their ancient, underground bodega (cellar) is still in use, where they hand-stack over 1.2 million bottles.
  • The winery is also renowned for its history of outstanding female winemakers. Montecillo oenologist Mercedes Garcia has earned the bodegas accolades from around the world.

Download this brochure to learn more about Bodegas Montecillo.

Sail away on the world’s most famous route… All in the comfort of your own home!

The Silk & Spice website is now live, and it captures the sentiment of this brand perfectly. Click around, steer the vessel, trim the sails, and enjoy the ride. Click here to visit their website.

Make sure to like the Silk & Spice page on Facebook, which already features some of Vasco da Gama’s most adventurous logbook entries. And stay tuned for more exciting news about Silk & Spice.

Here’s why Gazela’s consumers always want more…

Learn why this wine is so treasured, and why this brand is so iconic, all over the world.

One of the most iconic brands launched by Sogrape Vinhos, Gazela is the ultimate light and fresh Vinho Verde, with a soft citrine yellow color and slight fizz that stimulates the palate. An aromatic, flavorful bouquet is complemented by notes of tropical fruit and a slight sweetness, all with a delightful zing of effervescence. It is a tremendously versatile pairing for many types of cuisine.

The coastal region of Vinho Verde in Northwest Portugal is the biggest DOC in the country, with over 51,000 acres of vineyards. Despite its literal translation to ‘green wine,’ it’s intended to delineate a young wine; these crisp and unoaked wines are released three to six months after harvest and are meant to be drunk young.

Fun facts

  • Gazela is naturally 30% lower in calories than the average white wine (81 versus 120)
  • The lower alcohol content (9%) is the result of harvesting the grapes before they are fully ripe; it is also one of the reasons it is so easy to drink!
  • This past year, a guerrilla marketing campaign successfully implanted the word gazelar into Portuguese pop lexicon.The ‘verb’ expresses embarking on a fun or relaxing experience, whether it be spending time with friends, relaxing on the beach with a glass of wine – anything that begs someone to say to their friends, let’s ‘gazelar.’


  • 40% Louriero, contributing hints of bay leaves and spices
  • 30% Pedernẫ, white floral aromas and citrus notes
  • 15% Trajadura, apricot and tropical fruit aromas
  • 15% Azal, bright acidity and citrus overtones

As for the numbers
Contrasting a consistently flat category of total imported wine, Portuguese table wines grew by a whopping 15% in 2015. (Consumers are appreciating their high quality and affordable prices.) Vinho Verde makes up about 40% of this number. So hop on the Vinho Verde train with this world-approved and highly rated wine.

Wine Enthusiast gives Framingham Sauvignon Blanc 90 points

This rating of the 2015 vintage is a great complement to the recent Decanter review, which included a 91-point rating and silver medal award. If you’re in or near NY this weekend, come taste this excellent wine at the New York Wine & Food festival!

The review will appear in Wine Enthusiast’s online database in December, and will possibly appear in Wine Enthusiast’s Best of Year issue.

Framingham’s Sauvignon Blanc (100%) is a classic Marlborough style with a signature dry, mineral finish. The wine has become famous worldwide for its expression of place, and for the intensity of flavors resulting from the combination of young riverbed soils and cool climate.

Framingham utilizes small batch winemaking for depth in flavor and texture. While around 93% of the Sauvignon Blanc 2015 blend was fermented in stainless steel tanks at cool temperatures, the remaining 7% were barrel fermented at warmer temperatures to enhance texture.

Marlborough’s Wairau Valley, at the top of New Zealand’s South Island, is one of the world’s premier cool climate viticultural regions, whose range of soil profiles, from stones to clay, and different mesoclimates and vineyard practices, provide complexity in the finished wine.

For more detail, download the tech sheet.

Wine Advocate names Montecillo Reserva one of “20 Outstanding Value-for-Money Red Wines”

Out of those scoring 90 points or over and retailing for around $25 or less, and overall out of almost 2,000 wines tasted from around the world! This appears in the August Issue of the Wine Advocate, Issue 226.

The Reserva 2010 was also chosen by Wine Spectator to be poured at its exclusive New York Wine Experience, at the Rioja Lunch Seminar, taking place October 22.

These latest Montecillo vintages have won over palates across the board, including those of some of the most trusted U.S. wine publications:

Please find below more information on this exciting Robert Parker review.

  • Announcement: Including screenshot of Parker 20 outstanding wines.
  • Press Release: Official press release with quotes from the tastings.
  • Brand PPT: Learn more about the third oldest winery in the Rioja.

Wine Enthusiast gives Silk & Spice 90 points, names it a Best Buy!

The full review of the new red blend from Portugal that’s brimming with exotic flavors and bona fide history, will appear in Wine Enthusiast’s November edition.

Need a Silk & Spice refresh? Below are a few useful links.

  • Presentation: Including some details on brand activation and POS.
  • Mood Video: A perfect, tone-setting glimpse into the brand.
  • Fact Sheets: Learn about the varietals & regions of Silk & Spice.