The Soul of Ribera

Since he arrived in Ribera del Duero in 1990 to make Hacienda Monasterio, Peter Sisseck has never stopped pushing the envelope. His earliest breakthrough was of course Pingus in 1995. And his most recent triumph was the first release of his riveting Fino Sherry in 2020.

But Peter's most ambitious project was born in 2007, when he created Psi, to save the ancient vineyards of Ribera del Duero.

There was real urgency to Peter’s mission. Ribera’s priceless old vines were being ripped up by the thousands, as unsophisticated small growers were duped into believing they could make more money with “modern” vineyards.

So, Peter struck a deal with the growers. If they’d agree not only to keep their old head-pruned vines—but also farm them sustainably—he would pay them more for their fruit than they could possibly get if they were to replant.

Peter’s project has not only succeeded in saving hundreds of hectares of old vines from destruction. It has also produced one of the region’s greatest, yet most affordably priced, red wines—a beautiful marriage of 90% Tinto FIno (as Tempranillo is known locally) and 10% Garnacha.

And as the farming has taken hold, and more old vineyards have been added to the mix, Psi has gotten more and more profound. That is evidenced by the eye-popping 96-point rating from Vinous for the 2021.

To put this score into perspective, Vinous has only rated two other 2021 Riberas higher: Pingus and Dominio de Es’ Diva, which enter the market at $1000 and $700, respectively. Yet, we can offer 2021 Psi for just $33.95 a bottle and $189 for 6 bottles.

The secret to Psi’s quality is of course not just the old vines, it’s also the traditional winemaking: with long, gentle macerations and a relaxed élevage in oak tanks and barriques with very little new wood.

This is not only Ribera del Duero’s greatest bargain, it is also one of its greatest wines. It’s a privilege to be able to offer it, direct from Peter’s cellar, at its monumentally low price.

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