Marqués de Murrieta Castillo Ygay Gran Reserva Especial

Rioja, Spain

Vintage:2005 (Past)

2007 (Past) | 2009 (Past) | 2010 (Past) | 2011 (Current) | 2012 (Current)

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Marqués de Murrieta Castillo Ygay Gran Reserva Especial 2005
  • WA 96
  • WS 94
  • W&S 94
  • V 91


Wine Spectator

94 Points

September 30, 2014, Tom Matthews

“Bold and rich, this red fills the palate with blackberry, plum sauce, soy, chocolate and spice flavors. Broad and deep, in a modern style, with plenty of oak and enough backbone to stay focused. Drink now through 2020. 750 cases imported.”

The Wine Advocate

96 Points

December 29, 2013, Luis Gutiérrez

“The 2005 Castillo de Ygay Gran Reserva Especial, a classic among classics, is back in top form with the excellent 2005 vintage. It’s produced from a blend of 89% Tempranillo and 11% Mazuelo (aka Carinena), a difficult grape that is in high esteem at the winery (they exceptionally produced a varietal Mazuelo in 2000 to celebrate their 150th anniversary) as they consider it adds acidity and aging potential to the blend and has been selected specifically to make part of the flagship wine’s blend. In 2005, the Tempranillo was harvested on September 30, the Mazuelo on October 3, and fermented separately in stainless steel vats. The Tempranillo ages in American oak barrels and the Mazuelo in French ones, both for a period of 30 months. The wine matures for a further two years in bottle before being released. It’s extremely backward and tight, showing very young, with a balanced nose between spice, tertiary and cherry fruit aromas. It’s a powerful, still young vintage, with plenty of glycerin, body, round tannins. An austere wine (is it the Mazuelo?), it is complex and ever-changing in the palate. It has a sense of harmony that only the best wines have. Very long and elegant. I loved its serious and austere overall feeling. 100,000 bottles produced. This is a true vin de garde which develops complex notes of violet and meat with time in the glass. This is a Gran Reserva greatly marked by the Mazuelo, which should give it great ability to age. At this quality level it represents very good value. Drink 2014-2030.”

Wine & Spirits

94 Points

December 2013, Joshua Greene

“From 45-year-old vines at La Plana, a plateau of limestone and river rocks at 1,600 feet on Murrieta’s Finca Ygay, this vintage blends tempranillo with 11 percent mazuelo. It’s a Super Rioja, physically more powerful though perhaps less immediately terroir expressive than the 2004. The detail is all incipient in the wine, sparkling with acidity and mica-like reflections in the tannins, layering strawberry with blue fruit and black licorice, youthful and bright, smoky and firm. The texture is as grand as the expansive finish. This wine has the stamina and the breed to age for decades.”

Vinous Media

91 Points

July 2009, Josh Raynolds

“Bright red. Fresh red berry and spice aromas suggest a higher percentage of garnacha. Suave, energetic red berry flavors stain the palate, nicely braced by tangy mineral and spice qualities. The finish repeats the red fruit note and hangs on tenaciously.”


Only the finest vintages from the 741-acre Ygay Estate are used to make Castillo Ygay. This Gran Reserva Especial is made from tempranillo and mazuelo from vineyards located at 500 meters above sea level. Limited in production and sought after all over the world, it is the worthy choice for the winery's emblematic Castillo Ygay label.

The Cebrián-Sagarriga family, who in 1983 acquired the Marqués de Murrieta winery, established in 1852, has a distinct winemaking philosophy that is founded in the pursuit of quality and excellence through tradition and innovation.


The grapes were first carefully de-stemmed and squeezed and then fermented in temperature controlled stainless steel tanks for 11 days with daily remontage and pigeage processes to help develop the wine's personality. These processes ensured maximum color and aroma without producing excessive tannin. The wine spent 26 months in 225-liter oak barrels, and then three years in the bottle before being released to the market.

Harvest Notes

The grapes are manually harvested from an 80-year-old single-vineyard called La Plana, located at the highest peak (485m) within the 300-hectare Ygay Estate which surrounds the winery in the southern point of the Rioja Alta wine subzone. The tempranillo was harvested between October 15th and 17th, and the mazuelo on October 11th.

Food Pairing

Pairs beautifully with baked beef sirloin, cameroon black pepper and wild mushrooms, as well as roasted suckling pig with baked acid apple. Decanting the wine for 20 minutes is recommended. Best enjoyed between 64º- 66ºF.

Technical Information

Varietals: 89% Tempranillo, 11% Mazuelo

Wine Alcohol: 14%

Harvest Start Date: October 11, 2005

Harvest End Date: October 17, 2005

Aging: Aged for 26 months in 225-litre American and French oak barrels

Suggested Retail Price: $129.00