2012 was a warm and dry year, when some vines were blocked and stopped ripening the grapes. Surprisingly enough, many wines have retained more freshness than what the natural conditions of the year anticipated. Valenciso's 2012 Reserva has more stuffing and power than the 2011 and comes from a year that was saved by some rains in September and big temperature contrasts between day and night. It's very tasty, almost salty (the words of Jean Gonon from St Joseph saying "our wines are salty, to be enjoyed with food. There is no room for sweetness in our wines," comes to my mind). It's a modern classical Rioja in the making, still young but showing some development and incipient complexity. These wines develop slowly and nicely in bottle and seem to hit the spot after some eight years after the harvest.
93 points, Luis Gutiérrez, Wine Advocate (Issue # 243 - Jun 2019)
Iron and iodine are infused with licorice, cassis, vanilla and cherry liqueur. The tannins chisel out a layered approach of subtle dark fruit on the palate, the bold acidity being the driving factor throughout. Delicious and mouthwatering on the finish. Drink in 2021.
92 points, James Suckling (Jul 2019)