Monday, December 10, 2007

Rioja Goodie

Back in the 'Good Old Days'..(late 70's) you could buy Rioja from the mid 60's for little money..and they just gushed with oak and vanilla..happy the youth of my wine-drinking. Into the 80's and many growers tried to 'stretch' their wines to accommodate public demand. It was 15 years before Rioja convinced me that they were making wines to be trusted.
Nowadays there are some Bodegas still using the traditional method..but many produce a more modern style. This vineyard seems to have found the 'happy medium'
The vineyard only releases in great years...

some of the vines being 60 years old.
100% Tempranillo..spend 16 months in new
French (Allier) oak barrels.

Esculle de Solabal 2004
Bodegas Solabal
Rioja, Spain

Ruby red with a dark core; very good nose of blackberries and forest fruits..reserved oak...some honey; concentrated flavour, although 14.5% alcohol..this is so well balanced and no heavyweight in the mouth..oak again integrated in firm soft tannins..a little masculine at the moment...some cassis and eucalyptus..good long finish...still youthful but can be drunk...methinks this will develope..and maybe be worth a point more in 5-10 years.

Points 17.5+

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