May 12 2010
Wild weather here in Chicago: rain, tornadoes (in the good ol’ burbs), more rain. It makes one want to bundle up with a good book and some popcorn. A good wine to pair with a predictably tempestuous night? Tempranillo, of course (word play!).
Here at Just Grapes, we’re spending our Wednesday conducting a special seminar on the deliciously varied black-blue grape. Whether from Ribera del Duero or Rioja–whose wines most are familiar with–tempranillo is an affordable, accessible grape with all manner of moods and flavors for any discerning palate. Below are our favorites:
2005 Solabal, Tempranillo, Crianza, Rioja, Spain [$20.49]
“100% tempranillo…Saturated red. Expressive, highly complex bouquet of red berries, white pepper, dried flowers and baking spices. Supple redcurrant and raspberry flavors are concentrated but not heavy, with nervy minerality adding energy to the back end. Nicely balanced Rioja with a nice interplay of sweet fruit and musky herbs on the finish. This is complex enough to drink now.” 90 pts – Steven Tanzer
2007 Emilio Moro Finca Resalso, Tempranillo, Ribera del Duero, Spain[$15.49]
An enticing perfume of mineral, violets, black cherry, and blackberry. On the palate it reveals an elegant personality, savory, spicy flavors, good depth, and a fruit-filled finish. 90 Pts – Robert Parker
2007 Teso La Monja Almirez, Tinta de Toro, 100% Tempranillo, Toro, Spain [$31.99]
Vivid ruby. Very pretty, focused aromas of raspberry, rose, minerals and Asian spices. Sweet red and dark berry flavors are complicated by graphite and candied floral qualities reminiscent of pinot noir. The finish features smoky minerals and leaves behind sweet red fruits. This lively wine is balanced to reward aging, and will continue to evolve for 4-7 years.
91 Pts – Steven Tanzer