Brunello Fans Meet Your New Spanish Favorite

by Andrew Wellisch - Date: 2007-01-21 - Word Count: 227 Share This!

f you have been following our newsletters - and we hope you have - we recently featured a fantastic Brunello di Montalcino by Scopetone stressing its youthful approachability while still retaining the characteristics of a wine well beyond its years. We loved that wine and found its Spanish equivalent, the 1998 Bodegas Muga Prado Enea Gran Reserva; this delicious red sees one year in large oak vats, three years in new Bordeaux barriques and a minimum of three years in bottle.

Traditional in style, this wine evokes Burgundy with its reverence to terroir allowing Temperanillo (the prominent grape varietal in Rioja) to truly express the land, soil, climate and everything that is Rioja. There is a lean, pale, cherry and vanilla scent that is reminiscent of sweet and sour cherries in the mouth, with good acidity and ripe - but not overpowering - tannins.

Though recently released, this wine is just now entering its prime. It's mature yet fresh, elegant yet powerful and full bodied with a long finish. The 1996 received 92 points from Robert Parker, Jr. and the 1998 is every bit the wine and more. Graceful enough to drink with fish - say an swordfish steak or salmon, this Tempranillo has enough backbone to also marry with a pork chop, venison or duck. This wine will benefit from decanting. Try not to drink it all in one sitting - we dare you.

Related Tags: spain, red wine, spanish wines, rioja, temperanillo, muga

Andrew Wellisch

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