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January 2008


WINE & SPIRITS

The Emperor of Wine

(Page 3 of 3)

Later, sampling Toro from the Paciencia estate near Salamanca in Spain—one of his favorite bottles—I got a glimpse of Magrez the poet. "I arrived in Toro and the terroir was desolate. I constructed the winery smack in the middle and bought an abbey dated back to 1250. A few years ago, I visited the vineyard in the evening. There was such a cold wind that I wondered how my vines survived. But it's the terroir; the heat of the day is stronger than the cold of the night. This wine tastes of the bright sun, a harmony of the weather, soil, people."

I asked him if he could pick out his wines blindfolded. "When I taste my wines, I can envision the land," he said. "I can even see the exact block of vines where the grapes were picked." Magrez doesn't need that private jet to reach his 35 wineries, it seems. A mere taste can transport him there.

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