Pingus is one of the world’s rarest and most collectable wines. It is made in tiny amounts that never match insatiable global demand and this means that any availability is always seriously interesting.
The wine was made famous when Robert Parker wrote the following back in 1996 aftertasting the 1995 vintage, “I am not kidding when I say this might be the greatest young red wine I have ever tasted from Spain” and awarded 96-100. This immediate placed it on the fine wine map and conferred instant cult status on the 500 or so cases that are produced every year.
100% very old vine Tempranillo in the heart of the Ribera del Duero where miniscule yields allow for phenomenal depth and concentration, Pingus is extraordinary wine and an absolute must-have for any complete cellar.
0 immediate, 3 marketplace
Average critic rating : 97.5 points
Vintage conditions required a stricter selection for the 2007 Pingus. The aromatics are more brooding but seriously multifaceted. Smoke, pencil lead, truffle, Asian spices, blackberry, and licorice notes are followed by a chewy, dense, rich, powerful wine with fully integrated oak, savory black fruits, ripe tannins, and a decade of aging potential. Drink it from 2020 to 2037 if not longer. Jay Miller-Wine Advocate # 189 Jun 2010
This shows masses of minerally character with dried fruit such as prunes. It's almost like Christmas pudding. It's full-bodied and very silky but has a chewy, lightly austere back palate. Creamy acidity gives the wine balance and style. Drink or hold. (July 2015) www.jamessuckling.com
Pingus: The Importance
Few wines have had as profound an impact on their homeland as Pingus. One of the world’s most elite wines, it rivals even the Bordeaux first growths for both prestige and price with a cult following to match.
A ‘garagiste’ style wine produced from ancient Tempranillo, Pingus first became the stuff of legend when the fledgling 1995 vintage debuted on Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate with 96-100 point score. This staggering achievement was rendered even more astounding given that the wine came from Ribera del Duero, a region hitherto known for mass-produced ‘bulk’ wine (with the notable exception of the inimitable Vega Sicilia). Robert Parker did not mince his words when assessing the 1995 Pingus’s quality:
“It is one of the greatest and most exciting young red wines I have ever tasted. I am not kidding when I say this might be the greatest young red wine I have ever tasted from Spain.”
Fast-forward to the present day and Pingus has become a gold-standard in winemaking, not just in Ribera del Duero or Spain but worldwide, sporting a handful of perfect 100 point scores and many more in the high nineties from Parker. These accolades, coupled with a miniscule production of fewer than 500 cases a vintage have led Pingus to be one of the world’s most covetable wines.
Pingus: The Insight
At the heart of Pingus’s story are its vines. The wine comes purely from biodynamically farmed old Tempranillo vines, with some plants exceeding 65 years in age. The wine is fermented in large wooden casks and is largely left alone once it is in barrel. Founder and winemaker Peter Sisseck is adamant that this is the secret to Pingus’s success and is vocal about the purity of his vines.
Three wines are currently produced at Dominio de Pingus. The first is of course the legendary flagship, of which just 500 cases are made a vintage, with none made at all in poorer years (none was produced in 2002). The top vintages of Pingus are undoubtedly the 2004 and 2012, both with 100 points from Robert Parker, but others such as the 2005, 2006, 2007 and 2010 are all similarly incredible wines.
Pingus’s second wine is the Flor de Pingus. Made of 100% Tempranillo sourced from a handful of estate parcels in the La Horra region, it is crafted from 35+ year old vines that are also owned by Peter Sisseck. Flor de Pingus is crafted with all the same philosophy, making it an excellent insight into the domain’s winemaking: Jay Miller of the Wine Advocate called it “a very close approximation of Pingus at a fraction of the price.” In fact, in some years Flor de Pingus has been known to rank hot on the heels of the flagship wine: in 2004 it scored at a staggering 98 points and in 2008 it came in at 96, just a point less than Pingus’s 97.
The final and newest wine from the Dominio de Pingus stable is the PSI. Sisseck began PSI as side project in 2007 with the intention of making the most of Ribera del Duero’s many old vine sites and the huge surplus of grapes unused by their owners. The project has so far been a success, with the 2012 PSI earning a highly respectable 92+ points from the Wine Advocate – not bad for grapes that would have otherwise gone to waste. In 2010, the production of PSI doubled to 16,600 cases a vintage.
Pingus: The Background
After a successful career in France making wines in Bordeaux, Danish winemaker Peter Sisseck arrived in Spain on a whim in 1990, settling in Ribera del Duero. The odds were seemingly stacked against him. The region had become known for focusing on quantity rather than quality and seemed unlikely to ever challenge the mighty Rioja. Sisseck was determined and, on purchasing a tiny plot of neglected 60-year-old vines, the Pingus story began.
His first ever vintage, the 1995, produced 325 cases of wine – 75 of which were allocated to the U.S. market and packed up for shipping. Some weeks later, that shipment sank, with all of the 75 cases disappearing near the Azores in the North Atlantic. While Sisseck’s parcel was not the only wine shipment on board – nor the most sizeable – the loss represented a staggering proportion of the fledgling vineyard’s production and seemed a devastating blow to the Pingus dream.
Or so Sisseck assumed. In reality, the sudden disappearance of nearly a quarter of the wine’s miniscule production rendered it unexpectedly collectable. Demand for Pingus surged almost overnight, rendering it one of the most sought-after Spanish wines. This spike in interest was a catalyst, but it would be unfair to overlook the quality of Dominio de Pingus’ wine, which has proved its excellence time and time again and which now rightly holds the crown of Spain’s foremost cult wine.
See all wines from this Producer
FINE+RARE offers UK home delivery through our logistics partner London City Bond, with next day deliveries available for Central London addresses.
We deliver Monday to Friday; charges are £ 16 + VAT for up to 10 cases (12x75cl or equivalent) for most UK postcodes.
For delivery charges to Highlands, Islands and outlying areas, please contact our Customer Service Team.
For deliveries into Hong Kong, we offer a dedicated air and sea service.
For more details regarding delivery to Hong Kong and all other destinations, please view our International Delivery information page.
Our storage costs are highly competitive. We will happily accept cases or single bottles, charging pro-rata based on the number of bottles and length of storage period.
Unlike many other wine companies, our service includes storage of duty paid wines as well as in bond from any reputable source, not just those bought through FINE+RARE.
Please visit our F+R Storage information page for more details.
IN BOND AND DUTY PAID DELIVERY TO STORAGE ACCOUNTS:
FINE+RARE can arrange delivery of your wines to your personal fine wine storage account:
Deliveries within London City Bond or to a Vinotheque storage account are charged at £ 8 + VAT for up to 10 cases (12x75cl or equivalent).
Deliveries to all other storage providers are charged at £ 16 + VAT for up to 10 cases (12x75cl or equivalent).
Please contact our Customer Service Team if you have any questions.