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The Prieto Picudo Grape


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About Prieto Picudo

(Synonyms: .)

Background

Map showing the Tierra de Leon region of Spain.

Prieto Picudo is a red-wine grape possibly originating in the Tierra de Leon region of northern Spain, which remains its present-day home (though some say it might have been brought there from Portugal). It is often bottled as a monovarietal, but also appears in blends with one or both of the other two main red grapes of that region, Tempranillo and Mencía.

Prieto Picudo wines are typically deeply colored, with moderate tannins and significant acidity; they are frequently made with some oak exposure. Broadly speaking, it resembles its better-known stablemate Tempranillo; flavor elements usually mentioned for it are red currant, blackberry, and licorice (Jancis Robinson calls it “musky”). Prieto Picudo also often shows minerality, and—when oak has been used—the usual vanilla and toast.

For reasons not clear to us (or any wine writer we encountered researching this grape), Prieto Picudo remains a “secret wine” in both the U.S. and the U.K. It isn’t written up much, it isn’t offered for sale much, and its high quality (which those few critics who have sampled it attest to) seems ill represented by many, arguably most, of the inexpensive bottlings that reach the aforementioned markets.

Factoid: Prieto Picudo is not officially allowed to be sold as a varietal wine in a DO. As a wise man once observed, God must love idiots—he makes so many of them.

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Some Descriptions of Prieto Picudo Wines

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Some Prieto Picudos to Try

(About this list.)

Considering price, availability, and quality there is really only one candidate (though you should keep your eyes peeled when you visit any winemonger).

(Of higher-priced bottlings, you can look for Tridente Prieto Picudo, at $25 to $35 albeit with few offerings, or Raúl Pérez “Los Arrotos del Pendon Tinto”, at $22 to $40, also with few offers. Or you can consider the “splurge” wine listed farther below.)

Mary Taylor “Pedro Gonzalez Mittelbrunn” Prieto Picudo
(The identity can be confusing: Pedro Gonzalez Mittelbrunn is the winemaker, and the wine is often listed under his name, though the winery is Mary Taylor Wines.)

• This wine’s Wine Searcher “Reviews” page.
    CellarTracker has two separate listings for this wine:
• This wine’s CellarTracker review pages.
• This wine’s CellarTracker review pages.
• Retail offers of this wine listed by Wine Searcher.
• Retail offers of this wine listed by 1000 Corks.

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For a Splurge

Our nomination is the Raúl Pérez Prieto Picudo, which retails for from about $50 to $56 (if you can find it—it’s rather scarce). Do not mistake this for their Rosado offering nor their “Rara Avis” bottling, nor yet the “Los Arrotos del Pendon Tinto” cited farther above.

• This wine’s Wine Searcher “Reviews” page.
• This wine’s CellarTracker review pages.
• Retail offers of this wine listed by Wine Searcher.
• Retail offers of this wine listed by 1000 Corks.

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This page was last modified on Monday, 15 November 2021, at 2:20 am Pacific Time.