10 January 2010

"Tempranillo" with an Afterword from Nestle and L'Oreal

2006 Aalto, Vinedos y Bodegas (Ribera del Duero, Spain, 14.5% abv). From memory (as in, the day after). Towering, and admittedly alcoholic perfume, but not unpleasant or overt and overpowering. Gobs of mulberry and blackberry preserves, mesquite, new leather, maybe a shadowy hint of currant and some melted milk chocolate. This is, at least perfume-wise, indicative of fashionable Ribera double D and Tempra: A great grape with lots of cosmetics. A Barbie doll wine.

One thing about Ribera del D though is that despite the weight, the depth, the richness of the flavors, a lot of these wines retain ample acidity. It gives these wines not only vigor, a racy exuberance that seems to electrify some of these monochromatic Cadbury flavors, but a bit of savoriness that adds a meaty, spicy characteristic--and thus a little complexity--to the otherwise buried tannin.

I would say that for the quality here, the abundance of rich and fun flavors and relative integration of very ripe fruit with very good oak (there seems to be no disconnect between the two as of yet), I believe Ribera del Duero, even with its L'Oreal and Nestle tendencies, is honest wine, worth another thousand looks...and sips.

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