Top Spanish Red Wines - 2016

I tend to taste and drink a lot of wine over the course of a year. I am in a few tasting groups, sometimes the wines are consumed at various local wine store tastings and a number drunk with friends and family.

NV Art of Earth Sangria, Spain, Castilla - La Mancha, Wine Review

Score: 
88
Grade: 
B+
Current Price: 
$12.00USD

Made from Organic Tempranillo and Garnacha grapes in Spain.  This is the kind of wine, that might be easy to dismiss.  It is not meant to be serious with its playful packaging and ceramic stopper.  But, at the end of the day, it is a nice wine.  Ruby in color, clear and bright.  There is a slight frothy spritz.  On the palate, there are raspberries, fresh and candies, oranges, and a slight sweet quality to it.  On the palate, this is sweet but not cloying.  Cherries, black cherries and raspberries.  The finish has a bit of a bitter cherry quality.  There is enough acidity for this to work w

2018 Bodegas Paniza Co-op Sotavento Garnacha, Spain, Carinena, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2018
Score: 
88
Grade: 
B+

Sotavento is a private label bottling from this cooperative in Spain. It is made from Garnacha (Grenache).  Garnet in color, mostly clear and bright.  The nose is tight.  With air, black cherries and dust come out.  Medium bodied.  Firm tannins.  On the palate, black cherries and spice.  Moderate finish.  This needs some time, but it remains to be seen if the fruit outlasts the tannins.  Probably better with some food.  Stews would work well.  Drink over the next five years.  

 

2008 R. López de Heredia Rioja Reserva Viña Tondonia, Spain,

Vintage: 
2008
Score: 
95
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$40.00USD

One of the best of the traditional Rioja wine producers.  This wine lived up to its reputation.  A blend of 75% Tempranillo, 15% Garnacho, 10% Graciano and Manzuelo.  Ruby in color, mostly clear and bright.  The nose has cherries, slight plums, vanilla, smoke and slight balsamic notes.  Medium to full bodied.  On the palate, this has plenty of depth.  Cherries, dried cherries, smoke and slight dill notes.  Good acidity.  Nice finish.  This is delicious and complex.  It drinks great on its own and even better with food.  Lamb stew would be a nice choice.  Drink over the next fifteen to twent

2021 Ameztoi Getariako Txakolina, Spain, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2021
Score: 
91
Grade: 
A-
Current Price: 
$21.00USD

A delightful white wine from the north of Spain.  Fermented in stainless steel, a little natural effervescence remains in the bottle.  Screw capped.  Light golden in color with a stream of small bubbles.  The nose has minerals, green apples and salinity.  Light bodied.  Balanced.  Refreshing.  On the palate, just a hint of fizz. Flavors of green apples with some salinity.  Easy to drink at 11% abv.  This drinks nicely on its own and is perfect with lighter foods but also if those foods have a spicy kick. Drink over the next year or two as the fizz and freshness will start to fade.

2020 Viña Nora Albariño Rías Baixas Nora, Spain, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2020
Score: 
91
Grade: 
A-
Current Price: 
$13.00USD

This has always been a favorite value wine.  Although the wine sees no oak, it spends four months on the lees leaving a creamy texture and notes that resemble oak.  Green/gold in color, clear and bright.  The nose has some vanilla, along with pears and lanolin.  Light to medium bodied.  On the palate, there is a nice green apple note with plenty of energy.  A bit of salinity on the finish.  This drinks well on its own and would pair quite well with shellfish.  Drink over the next few years.  

2020 Pago del Cielo (Torres) Céleste Verdejo Rueda

Vintage: 
2020
Score: 
88
Grade: 
B+
Current Price: 
$15.00USD

This is made from the Verdejo grape.  Green/golden in color, clear and bright.  The nose as spice and golden raisins.  Full bodies.  No fruit, this is about minerals and spice.  On the palate, minerals and hay with some spice.  Good acidity.  Round texture.  Long finish.  This is good value.  Food friendly.  It will work nice with lighter pork or chicken dishes.  Pork chops would be a nice choice.  Drink over the next few years.  

2019 Cofrade Rioja, Spain, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2019
Score: 
88
Grade: 
B+
Current Price: 
$9.00USD

I believe this is Viura.  Yellow gold in color with some green hues, clear and bright.  The nose has some minerals and smoke.  It has a viscous texture.  On the palate, this is tart with green apple notes.  Moderate finish.  A nice sipping wine that will work well with lighter foods.  Drink now.  

2020 Bodegas del Mundo Valdemoreda Mulberry Creek Blanco, Spain, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2020
Score: 
87
Grade: 
B

I am told this is Tempranillo Blanco.  Very pale yellow gold in color, clear and bright.  The nose is tight but with some air show both limes and peach.  Interesting.  Slightly oily texture.  On the palate, it is somewhat candied with notes of lingonberries.  Sorter finish.  An interesting wine that would benefit from food.  Sardines might be an excellent paring.  Drink over the next year.  12% abv.  

2019 Comando G La Bruja de Rozas, Spain, Madrid, Gredos, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2019
Score: 
94
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$30.00USD

I had the 2015 in a visit to the winery in the Sierra de Gredos mountains just west of Madrid.  It was interesting to revisit, this time at a wine bar in Charlotte, NC.  This is one of their "Village" level wines which is also much more affordable.  Ruby in color, clear and bright.  The nose has sour cherries, some black cherries and thyme.  Light tannins.  On the palate, cherry, licorice and spice.  Great texture.  Delicious.  Nice on its own but better with food.  Nice finish.  This is Grenache but it is different than most with a bit of a "Pinot" profile to it as well.  Drink over the ne

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