Operative: Agent Red
Objective: Acquire a delicious and exclusive Rioja for our operatives
Mission Status: Accomplished!
Current Winery: Bodegas Landaluce
Wine Subject: 2007 Fincas de Landaluce Crianza Rioja Tempranillo
Winemaker: Benito Escudero
Rioja Is the wine of the Navarre and Basque region of Spain (although the Basques would argue that it is actually Spain). Offically designated Denominación de Origen (or DOC, not to be confused with Italian Goria). The grapes must be local varietals and grown in one of the three Rioja zones. Wine has been produced in the area since the Phoenicians and Celtiberians originally cultivated the land in the 8th century.
Made of 100% Tempranillo, today’s wine is a superb example of the varietal, direct from the true home of Tempranillo.
Look – Dark garnet, with even coloring from core to edge. At the heart of the wine, it becomes much darker and slightly opaque. When swirled, tall, skinny legs form high up on the glass wall before moving slowly downward.
Smell – Sweet, dark and ripe, with dark cherry, spiced blackberry, dusty bramble, tobacco leaf, dark brown spice all working together in a lush, inviting harmony.
Feel – Cool and light on the initial attack, then quickly grippy with a spreading dryness that moves from the front of the palate, rearward. Flint and wet limestone provide a mineral base and bright acids give the wine a lively overall appeal.
Taste – Black cherry, plum, leather, tobacco leaf, black tea leaf, exotic dark spice, raw cocoa nib are the primary notes on the palate. These are underpinned by salty wet rock (limestone and flint), softly toasted oak, mocha, subtle wild fennel and a hint of black pepper.
Finish – Long and flavorful with dark fruit that that gently gives way to bramble, dusty earth and wet rock from the palate.
Conclusion – The 2007 Fincas de Landaluce Crianza Rioja Tempranillo is a delicious wine with plenty of dark fruit and a mineral-rich earthiness that our tasting panel loved. Bright acids make the wine an obvious companion for a rich meal. We paired our with Louisiana hotlinks, grilled artichokes and green beans. the pairing was divine. Having read other reviews of this wine, after writing our review, we were very surprised to see that powerful oak was an attribute that was called out. We did not find any suchoveroaking with this wine. Perhaps the wine has aged very gracefully since those other reviews, because we found the wine to be very easy on the palate, with its soft oak a compliment to the wine, rather than a distraction. Drink this delicious wine now, or cellar for the next few years.