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Vandal spills 60,000 litres of wine at Spanish winery – report

An intruder at the highly regarded Cepa 21 winery in Ribera del Duero has reportedly opened up tanks, ruining thousands of litres of wine with a potential estimated value exceeding €2m (£1.7m).

Spain’s Cepa 21 winery in Ribera del Duero has been targeted in an act of sabotage that reportedly sent 60,000 litres of wine gushing onto the cellar floor.

Police from the country’s Guardia Civil were investigating the attack at the winery, located in Castrillo de Duero, Valladolid, which took place in the early hours of Sunday morning (18 February), according to media reports.   

CCTV footage purportedly showing the incident and shared widely by Spanish media shows a hooded person moving quickly between vats in the cellar and opening them up. 

Liquid can be seen spraying out of one vat, in the below Youtube video uploaded by the El Mundo media outlet.

The winery could not be immediately reached for comment, but Cepa 21 president José Moro Espinosa said in a LinkedIn post on Monday (19 February) that it had been a difficult day for everyone at the winery. He thanked those who have sent messages of support.

Among the wine lost was around 20,000 litres destined to be bottles of  Cepa 21’s high-end Horcajo label, El País newspaper quoted winery owner José Moro as saying.

Wine intended for the producer’s Malabrigo label was also lost, and Moro estimated the total value of wine ruined in the attack was about €2.5m.

A Cepa 21 representative told BBC News that the saboteur appeared to be familiar with winemaking equipment in general, noting that it took relatively little time to open up the tanks in the cellar. 

They added that it was too early to speculate on the intruder’s identity, however.

Ribera del Duero is home to some of Spain’s most prized wineries.

Moro is a highly respected winemaker who has dedicated his entire career to the sector.

Cepa 21 harvested the first vintage of its namesake wine in 2002. In recent weeks, its ‘Hito’ wine from the 2021 vintage was awarded 92 points in a Decanter panel tasting of wines from the region.

Produced from 100% Tempranillo grapes, experts said they enjoyed the wine’s ‘elegant spice’ and ’rounded finish’.


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