93 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
"The 2013 Selección Especial is a blend of Tempranillo with 15% Cabernet Sauvignon plus 10% Syrah, and other varieties like Merlot and Petit Verdot, from the 54 plots in which they divided their 180 hectares of vineyards. 2013 was a challenging vintage that required some sorting. They went for shorter macerations to avoid green notes in the wines. This particular cuvée matured in French and American oak barrels for 13 months. The selection clearly paid off and the wine comes through as balanced and fresh, with the oak perfectly integrated in the wine. 2013 was a heterogeneous vintage, capable of the best and the worst, where the work in the vineyard shows in the wines. This is a very successful cuvée, produced in large quantities. It's a far cry from the very oaky wines of yesteryear, very representative of the place and vintage; having enough vineyards and different varieties, they can select what goes into the wine each year depending on the natural conditions, as they also sell some in bulk. In 2013 the difference is that they used some more Merlot and a touch of Petit Verdot, which provided some extra punch. This is a great success over the vintage conditions, very accessible and drinkable, with contained alcohol. The good news for consumers is that this cuvée is reaching a very similar level of quality than the single vineyard bottlings."
Vinous Reverie Notes
Founded in 1996, Abadia Retuerta is one of Spain's most high-tech producers in the Sardon de Duero region of Northern Spain. This well balanced blend of 75% Tempranillo, 15% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Syrah and other red varieties such as Merlot and Petit Verdot gets it's expression in part from the soil compositions which differ plot to plot from gravel, alluvium, limestone, sand and clay. In the end, it's aged 13 months in French and American Oak barrels. Tasting Notes: A dark blackish-red color, with aromas of licorice, tobacco, cassis, dark chocolate. On the tongue, some blueberry, spice and evidence of cedar comes thru. A medium body red with medium acidity and firm synergistic tannins fade away nicely on a long lingering finish.