Thursday, 18 April 2013

¡Ay, Bierzo!

I don't drink enough Spanish wine, which is a shame as Spain is producing some great wines from an increasing range of interesting terroirs such as Bierzo. This is made from 100% Mencía from 90 year old vines and aged in French oak for 18 months, followed by a year in bottle.

Bierzo, Peique, Selección Familiar, 2005
Brooding, deep, dark and impenetrable, almost black. The nose is very promising with chocolate and spice followed by toasted oak and a whiff of manure (in a pleasant way!). There is a lot of oak and alcohol, but once they recede there's a lighter palette than the colour suggests. The fruit blossoms with raspberries, blackberries, prunes, and a lot of acidity which makes this an excellent food wine. In fact, it's as though this is a white wine trapped within a red wine. The finish is fairly short but well supported by the oak and acidity. Although not young, I think this wine needs another few years to shake off the oak. This is a very good and interesting wine, full of character, but the palette doesn't quite match up to the promise of the nose. 3* 6.5/ 10

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