Teso La Monja Toro - Alabaster 2020


Teso La Monja was founded in 2007 by Marcos and Miguel Angel Eguren, the fourth winemaking generation of the Eguren family from San Vicente de la Sonsierra in Rioja Alavesa. As they have been growing Tempranillo in Rioja Alavesa since the late 1800’s, the Eguren family fell in love with D.O. Toro when they first travelled there with Jorge Ordóñez, seduced by the region’s original clone of Tempranillo and ungrafted vines.

Jorge Ordóñez and the Eguren family were the original founders of Bodegas Numanthia, which was responsible, along with their current work, for the resurrection of D.O. Toro as one of Spain’s preeminent wine regions. After the sale of Numanthia in 2007, the Eguren family founded Teso La Monja as a new challenge for the family – finding the elegance in the wines of Toro.

The family selected vineyards in the northernmost part of D.O. Toro that have a much higher proportion of rounded stones than what is typical. This produces extremely silky, elegant wines. The winemaker, Marcos Eguren, is considered by many to be the finest winemaker in Spain. His son, Eduardo Eguren, the fifth generation, also works as the winemaker at Teso La Monja. 

The berries are hand-destemmed, berry by berry, by a team of 75 at harvest. The whole berries ferment (inoculated with yeast cultured from their vineyards and cellar) in 1,000L French oak vats. Extraction is gentle to avoid over-extraction of the concentrated Tinta de Toro. Gentle press in a vertical basket press. Malolactic fermentation in new French barrique. Aged for 18 months in new French barrique.

"The 2020 Alabaster was produced with Tinta de Toro grapes from 11.5 hectares of ancient ungrafted vines that yielded 1,000 liters per hectare in 2020. The grapes were hand-destemmed and fermented in open tanks for 19 days, followed by malolactic in bottle and 18 months in new French oak barrels. It has 14.99% alcohol and a pH of 3.56. 2020 is a very approachable vintage, a year with finesse, elegance and balance, and this Alabaster is perfumed and floral and feels light on its feet despite the power, concentration and clout. It has a beautiful nose and the new oak is not overpowering despite being noticeable. It should develop nicely and for a very long time in bottle. It has great balance and is one of the finest vintages of Alabaster if not the best..." - 97 points, Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

Producer: Teso La Monja

Country: Spain

Region: Castilla y León

Varietal: Tempranillo

Appellation: Toro

Vintage: 2020

Size: 750ml