I was quite underwhelmed by a bottle of the 2016 at a blind tasting and was curious to see what the 2017 Quiñón de Valmira was like. This is the new-ish iconic wine from Rioja produced by Álvaro Palacios at the Palacios Remondo winery but sold through different channels and importers. 2017 was an extremely dry and warm vintage, and the harvest was 20 days earlier than normal. The majority of Garnacha with some 10% other red varieties was picked with good ripeness and very good health, and the destemmed and crushed grapes fermented in oak vats with indigenous yeasts. The wine went through spontaneous malolactic in barrel and matured in oak foudres and bocoyes for 16 months. It feels like the essence of cherry, a Garnacha cotton candy, elegant, ethereal and tasty, more in the style of a Châteauneuf-du-Pape in this dry and warm vintage. The palate has the austere chalky texture of the very shallow limestone-rich soils that produce a stony sensation and the sapid finish, which is almost salty. Production is slowly growing, and 3,350 bottles were filled in May 2019 with this 2017, the fourth vintage produced.