2010 Spanish Sons Tempranillo, Bodegas Fariña, Spain ($12)
This delicious red is not a Rioja. But, like Rioja, its major varietal component is Tempranillo. It is made in Castilla y Leon, west of Rioja, in one of my favorite eating towns in northwest Spain, Zamora (fabulous parador, fabulous Manchego-like cheese called Zamora!). Tempranillo in this zone can go from medium-weight wine, to monstrously dark wine, high in alcohol. What we have here, my friend…is the former kind of wine! And it’s a beautiful medium wine, at that. Medium-purple for starters…a surprising color for a 4-year old …probably indicating an extracted wine that will take its time to age. I love the ripe (but not too-ripe) fruits on the nose: blackberry, cranberry, something verging into beets, then leather and earth (but the aged tones are incipient). Extremely elegant, refreshing palate, with a touch of wood-like vanillin. A bit international in flavor, with a little fruit sweetness, but not catering to the 100-point guys…just delicious mainstream drinkin’. A bit of soft tannin…
I’m gonna use this as a go-to wine for all kinds of meats coming off the grill with crusty exteriors!
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