Three ambitious tipples from Spain

Three wines from the Pago de los Capellanes estate stood out from the crowd at the Wine from Spain annual tasting, says Matthew Jukes.


2015 Pago de los Capellanes, Crianza, Ribera del Duero, Spain.About £23.50,,,

The Wine from Spain annual tasting was held at Sky Garden at the top of the skyscraper known as the "Walkie Talkie" in the City of London. It was a great venue for this event, elevating the Spanish wine scene literally and metaphorically. There were rafts of ambitious wines and I tasted hundreds of bottles.

One of the estates that shone was Pago de los Capellanes in Ribera de Duero, with three outstanding wines in its portfolio. My featured crianza shows incredible charry, black cherry and plum fruit flavours with so much class and intensity it is hard to believe it has only seen a year in French oak.

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The crianza's big brother

Its big brother, 2014 Pago de los Capellanes Reserva (£38,, is even more intense and regal. This time, the oak regime is 18 months in 100% new French barriques and this loads the palate with decadent carpentry and masses of spice. Only just drinking, this has another decade ahead of it.

A new release, and a complete departure from the rich reds, is 2016 O Luar do Sil Godello (about £15.50,,,, which blew me away with its white-almond and pear-juice succulence. Godello is a haunting white grape with more depth and less exoticism than albario. Capellanes nails this grape's character and it does it at uncommon value for money.

Matthew Jukes is a winner of the International Wine & Spirit Competition's Communicator of the Year (

Matthew Jukes

Matthew Jukes has worked in the UK wine business for well over three decades and during this time has written 14 wine books.  

Matthew regularly lectures, judges, speaks at wine conferences and runs masterclass tastings for both corporate and private clients all over the world. Matthew is also the creator of his ground-breaking initiative, the One Day Wine School, an indulgent day of tasting and learning first performed in 2006.

He has been the MoneyWeek wine correspondent since 2006 and has written a weekly column for the Daily Mail’s Weekend Magazine since 1999. His four highly-acclaimed, annual wine reports – the Burgundy En Primeur Report, the Bordeaux En Primeur Report, the Piemonte Report and the 100 Best Australian Wines – are published on his website,

Matthew is one of the world’s leading experts on Australian wine and, with Brisbane-based wine writer Tyson Stelzer, runs an annual competition in Australia to find ‘The Great Australian Red’.  He was made Honorary Australian of the Year in the UK at the 2012 Australia Day Foundation Gala dinner. 

Matthew is a winner of the International Wine and Spirit Competition's Communicator of the Year Trophy.  His thoughts, recommendations and tastings notes are followed very closely by the wine world at large.