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.

2014 Bodegas Muga Rioja Selección Especial Reserva, Spain, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2014
Score: 
93
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$39.00USD

This is a blend of 70% Tempranillo, 15% Garnacha, 10% Graciano, and 5% Manuelo from Spain.  It is a modern, delicious take on Rioja.  Purple in color, ruby at the rim.  The nose has black raspberries, black cherries, espresso, and baking spices.  Full bodied.  Very nice texture. It has lots of black raspberries, some black cherries with underlying spice.  There is some warmth to it.  Drinking great now, it should drink well for another decade.  This drinks great on its own and will work great with heavier meat dishes.  Think steak or brisket.  

2015 4 Monos Vinos de Madrid Danza del Viento La Isilla, Spain, Sierra de redos, Wine Review

Vintage: 
2015
Score: 
94
Grade: 
A

From the mountains, just east of Madrid comes this old vine, high altitude Garnacha that is unlike any that I have tried from elsewhere in the world.  It is 98% Garnacha and 2% Cariñena.  The vines are 90 years old.  It is very pretty in the glass.  Light but intense ruby in color, clear and bright.  The nose has candied cherries, with underlying char and great minerality.  With air a touch of pine and salinity shows up.  On the palate, this is medium bodied.  Very concentrated.  The candied cherries are there but also a fresh cherry quality.  Underlying char and minerals.  Great energy wit

NV Harveys Sherry Harveys Bristol Cream, Spain, Jerez, Wine Review

Score: 
87
Grade: 
B+
Current Price: 
$15.00USD

After going decades without trying this, this is my second time this month.  And you know what, it shows well again.  Yes, this wine can be dissed by wine nerds, but it is enjoyable and reasonably priced.  One glass is plenty but that is true with many sweet wines.  Tawny in color.   The nose has a nice caramel and red apple quality.  There is little oxidation showing on the nose.  On the palate, this is nice.  Sweet but less than expected.  Caramel and nuttiness, with a slight salinity.  No hint of heat or alcohol.

NV Williams & Humbert Gran Duque d'Alba Solera Gran Reserva Brandy de Jerez, Spain, Wine Review

Score: 
92
Grade: 
A-
Current Price: 
$40.00USD

First off, this is not wine, it is Brandy.  That said, it is distilled from young, Palomino and Airén grapes. Then aged for ten to twelve years in American oak that had previously been used for oloroso sherry.  It is 40% abv.  Light golden in color.  The nose has alcohol but also a nice nuttiness with a bit of dates.  On the palate, this is warm but not hot.  There are nice figs along with caramel.  Warmth on the finish.  For $30, this is a nice value in Brandy.  Best sipped on its own.  

NV Emilio Lustau Pedro Ximénez Sherry Solera Reserva San Emilio, Spain, Jerez, Wine Review

Score: 
92
Grade: 
A-
Current Price: 
$23.00USD

Dark brown in color, drab green at the rim, bright and opaque.  The nose has a nice coffee quality to it along with a bit of chocolate and slight fig notes.  On the palate, this is smooth.  Not a lot of depth but tasty.  Sweet.  The chocolate and figs carry thru to the palate.  Nice finish.  This would be good on its own for dessert or with a not too sweet chocolate dessert.  

NV Alvaro Domecq Sherry 1730 Pedro Ximenez, Spain, Jerez, Wine Review

Score: 
93
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$36.00USD

This is a sweet dessert wine.  The PX grapes are picked and dried on straw mats until they have lost half of their weight at which point neutral spirits are added.  The soleras average over 30 years old though I didn't notice a VORS designation on the label.  Dark in color like black coffee.  The nose reminds of "tootsie rolls" along with some fig and coffee.  On the palate, this is viscous.  Notes of coffee and nutmeg along with fig.  Sweet.  Long finish.  This wine will last for decades.  This should be served for dessert either on its own or with a less sweet dessert made with coffee, fi

NV Bodegas Tradición Sherry Oloroso 30 Years Old VORS, Spain, Jerez, Wine Review

Score: 
95
Grade: 
A
Current Price: 
$78.00USD

This is a great bottle of wine.  Of course, only if one likes Sherry in a dry, oxidative style.  The average age of the wines making this up is 40 years old.  Light copper in color. The nose is great though there is some volatile acidity. Nutty, with salinity and slight burnt orange peel. On the palate, this is complex and deep. Dry.

NV Barbadillo Oloroso Sherry, Spain, Jerez, Wine Review

Score: 
88
Grade: 
B+
Current Price: 
$11.00USD

 This is 100% Palomino Fino aged for an average of five years.  it is made in an oxidative style.  It is the color of iced tea.  On the nose there is a nice butterscotch quality.  It is lighter and easier going on the palate.  Almost like a "starter" Oloroso, but certainly a few steps up from cooking sherry.  This should be consumed in the next few years.  It will go well with salty foods.  

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