2006 Bodegas Izquierdo ‘Antonino Izquierdo’ Vendimia Seleccionada

I wasn’t going to make a post today, I was going to come home and spend some time with the kids and then relax while I wait for the NHL playoffs to start. Well let’s just say things didn’t go as planned. I had a bad afternoon at work, I was late getting the kids who then managed to get yogurt all over the wall and floor and who proceeded to yell at the top of their lungs for several minutes. It was shortly after this that I made the executive decision to go down to my sorry excuse of a cellar (small wine fridge and some cardboard boxes) to fetch something to make up for this aforementioned bad afternoon. What I came up with was this wine. One that I purchased almost a year ago and have been holding off on, frankly because the reason I bought it was a shallow one – a 95pt Parker score- I didn’t have very good expectations for it but alas here I am now posting about this wine.

Upon opening this Tempranillo I let the wine sit in the glass for about an hour. Immediately after sticking my nose in the glass I knew I was going to like this wine. While there was a great purity to the fruit I also got a lot of savoury character coming through. Blueberries, blackberries, dark plum but also a touch of raspberry shine through. Along with smoked meat, balsamic, chocolate, vanilla, cigar box, coffee and leather. This wine has layers and layers, it doesn’t show over the top either. It’s actually quite elegant with tannins that have started to round and a medium + acidity and long finish.

IMG_2836

Upon looking into this wine further I was surprised but happy to find out that this is a biodynamic wine made with little intervention (some Sulfar) and with low yields. According to their website “Self fermentation takes place in the tanks without any exogenous additives. Wild ferments and naturally occurring vineyard yeast provide the fermentation energy for the wine.” The wine is macerated for 20-25 days and placed in 90% French and 10% American Oak. Judging by the taste likely new oak.

It’s not often that I agree with Robert Parker/Wine Advocate but in this case I think they got the call right. This has to be one of my favourite Ribera Del Duoro wines. While it’s not inexpensive, picked this one up for $50, it’s well worth this price or even double. Based on some pricing I’ve done of this wine in other regions it seems like a steal. If you kind find this wine in the 2005-2006 vintage it would be well worth your time to pick up a bottle or even a case.

Ever have this wine? Have a favourite Ribera Del Duero wine? I’d love to hear about it!

Cheers,
Ben

 

2016 Mount Langi Ghiran Cliff Edge Riesling

Last weekend, here in St. John’s (Newfoundland), we had The Down Under Wine Show. With 100+ wines to taste through from Australia and New Zealand I was quite surprised how few that I actually enjoyed. Certainly there were some technically great wines. New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Noir were there in full force, Australia with its big bold Shiraz/Cabernet blends and oaked Chardonnay wines were also quite tasty. While I enjoyed several Pinots and Shiraz, varieties I quite enjoy, the wines that stood out to me were a few of the lesser, although not unheard of grapes/varietals. An old vines Semillon to cellar, a voluptuous Marsanne/Roussane blend and a couple of Rieslings from cooler climate regions. IMG_2831

From a little known borderline cool-climate wine region – Grampians – this Riesling offered a welcome burst of vibrant fruit and acidity, after several highly oaked Chardonnay and just plain typical New Zealand Sauvignon Blancs it stuck out. Lime zest, lemon (more Meyer, almost orange, than traditional lemons), lemon blossom, elderflower, peach and flint remain the prominent characteristics. A pleasant floral and mineral wine with a medium + finish and a surprisingly low alcohol content of 11.5%. No doubt this wine has a great concentration from low-yielding 45 year old vines. This wine benefited from warm/hot days and cool nights which helped the fruit to stay in balance. This is my first wine from the region and I will definitely be searching out more. This may not have been my favourite wine of the night but it was sure up there and at under $25 it was for sure one of the best values.

The regions is also known for some great Shiraz and Cabernet, but then again what part of Australia isn’t. Ever had a wine from Grampians? How about a Riesling? I’d love to hear about it!

Cheers,
Ben