by Guest Contributor Pablo Echenique

At home, the ritual is repeated year after year when getting everything set for New Year’s eve celebration dinner. I like to accompany my father down to the cellar to choose the wine. Considering that my mother is a true gourmet when she finds the time and the occasion to cook, we must be very careful in our selection.

A professional optimist like myself always believes that “the best is yet to come”. This is why we chose Vega Sicilia’s “Tinto Valbuena” to start the feared year 9th of our century. In times of crisis the best is to grow strong and enjoy life.

Valbuena is the second label of the aforementioned legendary cellar (named after, Valbuena de Duero, Valladolid, home of Spain’s and, arguably the world’s best wines).

Everything has been written and said about the supreme quality of the wines produced at Vega Sicilia. Apparently, somebody asked once the British Prime Minister, Sir Winston S. Churchill which had been the best wine he had tasted in his life. “A superb Italian wine called Vega Sicilia”, he replied. The anecdote (“si non è vera è ben trovata”) perfectly illustrates a fact: the Italians sell their wines and other pleasures much better than we Spaniards do.

Valbuena is just a gift of God. The colour, the taste, the bottle, everything. Serving the wines of Vega Sicilia is like preparing the wine for Mass on Sundays! A liturgy of its own.

Well, the year has been emotionally intense. Such is life, nobody said it was easy… The important thing is that we had a great start. We hope that many Valbuenas will be on the way throughout this year. I like number 9. We shall never surrender, Sir Winston Churchill!