Pungent citrus, chamomile and nutty notes with a slightly bracing edge, enticing, finishing dry, intense, salty and saliva inducing. Go with the typical matches of Iberico ham, Marcona almonds, olives, Manchego cheese and the like, but also try with sashimi.
Liquorice from the llicorella soils of steep Priorato imbues this deep, rich Salmos, firmly gripped and framed by stones. Fermented in stainless, aged 14 months in French wood. This is not about fruit; sure, there's crushed wild cassis, wilder blackberries, black plum and blueberries that base this Cariñena/Garnacha/Syrah but this wine is much more about decomposed stones, slate and quartzite than black fruits. Balanced, finessed and strikingly ripe before a tightening shrink on the finish, this is best enjoyed now with wild lamb, boar or truffle risotto.
Tasted again, 1 year along, and this impresses as before. Finessed and fine grained, this quietly confident Tempranillo /Syrah comes from sustainably farmed steep slopes in Ribera del Guadiana DO, in the Extremadura region near Spain's Mediterranean coast. After a native ferment this spends 1 year in 500 L French oak prior to 1 year in bottle, with little intervention and low sulphur throughout. Worn leather, cured meats, salted cherry, plum, green tobacco, smoke and burnished salts are carried with a narrow stream of acidity, framed with finely worn tannins to a lingering, gentle finish. Savoury, striking, this is drinking well now.
From IGP Valdejalón, in north eastern Spain's Zaragoza, Aragon, this small batch garagiste Garnacha is from a single dry-farmed vineyard above 400 m. Low intervention throughout, and from 40+ year old vines, this spent time in concrete (plus 5% in 3-year-old barrels). Finely gritty, grippy dusty tannins house wild raspberry, a cherry core, dried herbs and fine pepper on the finish. Acidity is brisk to a quick finish, reflective of the dry, unrelenting environment. An individual wine of terroir (my bottle was 31,002). Grilled sausages or winter squash would shoulder up well.
There's a charm to young, northern Spanish reds, especially with some age to them. This current release (on our market) Crianza is modern styled, with soft raspberry, leather and perfumed plum, with moderate smoke infiltrating and vanilla potent on the bitter-edged finish. This Tempranillo aged sixteen months in French and American oak, and the shellacked grip of wood brackets the sides. This would be great with lamb meatballs on polenta.
Soft, easy drinking and juicy, this 100% Tempranillo is all about cherry, plum, strawberry, tobacco and cedar. Ready to drink alongside grilled sausage or spaghetti and meatballs.
This complex, deeply scented wine spent 24 months in barrel before release. It reveals blackberry and black plum accented with cinnamon and black pepper on the nose, with rich blackberry and blackcurrant compote and a splash of dark chocolate in the mouth. Drinking quite well now but can benefit from additional cellaring to tame still forward acidity.