We have kept a big secret for over half a decade. This is it.
La Soñadora is our Gran Reserva Tempranillo, the culmination of five years of hard work, patience, and hope. While we are passionate about pushing the boundaries and barriers of our craft, traditional winemaking remains the foundation for who we are and what we do. The dream to produce this wine harkens back to 2015, a year after we first rolled up our door, back when we didn't know if we would survive long enough as a business to see its release. And for that reason, no wine we have made is as precious to us as this one.
For over five years, this Tempranillo has been here by our side, evolving with us through all of our own joys and heartbreak. Its steady presence in our cellar linked the many incredible human beings who tended to it and all of the people who have shared in our journey. Through the years this wine has seen us get married, have families, buy houses, argue over three presidents, and fight wildfires.
More than anything ever born from our humble garage, this wine isn't just from us, it is us. The physical embodiment of what it means to "never dream alone." Appropriately, we have blessed this wine with the title of La Soñadora, Spanish for "the dreamer." And after a long wait, it is finally time to share this wine with you. Thank you for supporting us, for keeping us afloat to witness this release, and for dreaming along with us. It is our hope that La Soñadora may now share in your life's most important memories and dreams, as it has with ours.
Oh, and before you ask whether this wine really deserves to cost $85 per bottle, the answer is fuck yeah it does.
Ok, enough tears, let's get into why. Crafting Gran Reserva (or Riserva) wines is a tradition that traces back to the Rioja region of Spain. There they employ a classification system for their wines built around quality and aging. Tempranillo is a versatile grape and its zippy fruit flavors can be used to make a young fresh wine or a wise aged wine with softened tannins and deep flavor. In Rioja, wines with no or little aging, carry generic or "Crianza" classifications. Wines that enjoy 3 years of aging bear the "Reserva" classification. Then, at the very top sits, "Gran Reserva," which requires 5 years of aging, with at least 2 of those years in oak barrels.
For this project, our Tempranillo came from an immaculate old vine vineyard in Lodi. Harvested during the middle of the 2015 harvest season, we guided our fruit through traditional pressing before sending the wine to its new home inside of a couple of French oak barrels where it would remain for 5 long years. To put this in perspective, a typical Cabernet Sauvignon is in barrel between 6 and 30 months. Our Tempranillo was in barrel for 60. During this time, the wine's tannins soften and take in the wonderful oak characteristics only found in Gran Reserva productions. We knew this would be a long process, but hoped its rewards would be worth the wait, and after 5 long years, we finally discovered that it was.
Dark ruby in color with hints of brick red around its edges, La Soñadora looks and smells like a perfectly-aged wine. On the nose, deep aromas of black cherry tango with hints of espresso and oak. On your tongue, La Soñadora truly sings, with sexy flavors of cassis and huckleberry, notes of cherry, and complex rosemary herb, spice, and leather. Oh, shit, we forgot about the tannins. The whole reason we did this. The tannins and oak flavor in this wine are extraordinary, a level of perfection that only waiting on this fucker for 5+ years is capable of delivering. Not only is this wine a piece of art, it's a goddamn masterpiece of winemaking.
We knew we had to go all out on the label, so drawing on our Gran Reserva inspiration, we uncovered a vintage cigar box label featuring a composition of a Spanish woman, our dreamer, framed by ornate gold embellishments. It struck us so much that we had to recreate it, and it is truly the most beautiful label we have ever made. We even added something as a reminder to our supporters that we will always love you. See if you can find it.
La Soñadora is the most exclusive bottling from Tank Garage Winery ever. It is available at 10 AM PT on Friday, November 12, 2021. With only 48 cases produced, this is likely to go fast. Set your reminders and never dream alone.