Tag Archive: Tempranillo

Cune Rioja Gran Reserva 2010

This little Spanish wine came to me off of our damaged label shelf, a shelf at work that we put wines we can’t sell because of damaged packaging. Stores won’t sell them, because they won’t be able to get a full price. This Gran Reserva is a blend, with the main grape being tempranillo. It’s aged 24 months in French and American Oak, and then another 36 in the bottle.

The nose is a delicious baking spice, red fruit laugh. It’s full of raspberries, Flathead cherries, and bold oak vanilla toast flavors. The finish is a blend of oak and spice, with an acid kick that cleanses the palate. For as easygoing as this wine actually is, Cune does have quite a few surprising little nuances.

I’m shocked and pleased.


Conde Valdemar’s crianza Temranillo 2011 is a beautiful dark red. It’s nose is fennel seeds, dark unripe black fruit.

This wine has a good amount of woodsie flavor, not necessarily oak, but like rotting tree wood that breaks apart in your hand. This wine is full of blueberries, chocolate, smoke and black cherries, with a decisive spicy finish that echos with cinnamon bark.

I enjoy this wine, and it would be fantastic with grilled meat, or a smoked roast.



Hazana Vinas Viejas Riojas

Hazana’s Vinas Viejas Riojas 2013 from Bodegas Abanico in Spain is a delightfully simple little red wine. In the glass, this blend of Tempranillo and Graciano is a deep red, with slight rim variation. It’s meaty, red, raspberry juice, full of tobacco, red currants and dry cinnamon bark. The nice thing about this wine is that it tastes exactly like it smells.

Hazana’s Vinas Viejas is that it’s one of those Spanish wines that is tasty, but incredibly simple. If this wine were from France, it might be more complicated.

“Lelia” Garnacha 2013

This “Lelia” Garnacha 2013 from Carinena DO Spain at alcohol looks like Tempranillo in appearance, a deep inky black that does, but barely shows red against a white background. The aroma smells like red licorice, anise seed, red and black cherries, and Grandmother’s old house. It’s dried roses, raspberries, lavender, and brown sugar. This garnacha is a delicious interpretation of the varietal. It was much more enjoyable than the Altes Herencia Garnaxta. The beautiful thing about this Lelia is that it tastes precisely like it smells, and I believe that it would pair well with Quiche and lasagna.

Vina Gormaz Joven 2013

This delightful estate bottled Tempranillo from Ribera del Duero Spain comes from 30 year old vines, at an altitude of 900 meters. In the glass, there is light shining through the wine to create lovely patterns on a white table, however, there is a little rim variation, with slightly visible sediment. Vina Gormaz is a much lighter tempranillo than the Senda 66. It’s nose is rich, with luscious blueberries, tart raspberries, strawberries, and meaty briny spice, edged with cinnamon and charcuterie meat. Vina Gormaz’s Joven Tempranillo is almost a course unto itself, with fruity and meaty flavors and aromas. However, I do recommend pairing it with creamy chevre on crackers or salmon patee’.

Senda 66

Senda 66 2013 is a delicious little tempranillo from La Mancha Spain. At 14% alcohol, it’s a little heavy, but it isn’t the syrupy giants you get from California these days. This wine’s nose is meaty with blackberry preserves, fruit leather, whiffs of spice over a great, furry velvet tannic structure. This wine is beauifully Spanish. I haven’t ever found meaty wines quite like the ones from Spain, Crianzas and Reservas. On the palate, it’s surprisingly lush, with a red apple flesh and skin finish.

This wine would pair beautifully with deli meats, semi-soft cheese and soft cheeses. Frankly, I’d love to enjoy this wine with chevre and buttery crackers.

Location E-2

This is another Orin Swift Location wine. Location E-2 is a blend of grenache, tempranillo, monastrell, and carignan from Spain. This wine is deliciously meaty, violet hints of pastille candy, with a little bit of old oak. The sample of wine that I had for Location E-2 was opened before hand, and lacked a finish. I would attribute that to being open for so long. I wasn’t a fan, but it’s all subjective.

Antano Crianza 2008

antano crianzThe Antano Crianza from 2008 is a excellent value blend. The blend is 85% Tempranillo, 10% Graciano, and 5% Mazuelo. As a Crianza, it’s aged two years in oak casks before being released for consumption. Aging adds a depth and complexity that I find surprising for just two years. This Spanish beauty comes from the makers, Garcia and Carrion in the Rioja Region of Spain.

This deep youth presents as ruby in color with slight rim variation. It is fruit forward, with raspberries, red apple skin, jammy baked strawberries, tinted with spice box and bark. It’s big and juicy, and easy to drink with or without food. It’s velvety, opening to black and red currants in the glass, followed by tart unsweetened pie cherries. The Crianza is delightfully aromatic, with something nostalgic about the flavor and scents, finishing with deep plum juice tartness as it fades.

There were two other Antano wines that were brought to our store at the same time as this Crianza. The first was an unaged Tempranillo, which was more fruit forward, youthful, and though delightful, not at all complex. The other was a Reserva, which was aged for 3 years. I had not had the pleasure of tasting this one, though if the 2008 is any indicator, this 2007 Reserva is a pleaser on wheels.