2000 Rioja by Bodegas Urbina, Spain

Tonight’s occasion: 2000 Rioja by Bodegas Urbina, Spain.

After a long tedious day I decided to treat myself to this gem. To sort of reset and baseline my palate. As far as Tempranillo goes, this is how it was meant to be made and enjoyed. With great patience, tenacity and little fanfare.

Nose is slightly leathery out of the bottle. Old wet wood and faintest touch of mushroom. Swirling unlocks hints of sweet cherry, caramel, and faint berries. Tempranillo really needs time to become so harmonious and balanced.

Body greets with a touch of acidity that is quickly countered by a buttery smooth body. Those massive tannins typical of this grape have finally receded in the background, providing just the right amount of structure without overpowering the experience. Leather and hints of dark plum carry over. Transition to finish is smooth, characterized by a touch of dry black berries and currants. This ends in a dry tingling palate as a warm spice heat drop down the chest, reminding you this old timer still has a few tricks up its sleeve.

This Winemaker’s work is highly understated. For under $30/bottle this is a real head-scratcher (see link in bio). Pick up a few and study them closely for a better understanding of what you can expect out of a well built, dry Tempranillo.

Bien hecho amigos! 🍷😁👌🏽

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Reserve: 2000 Chateau Prieuré-Lichine Margaux, Bordeaux

Tonight’s occasion: 2000 Chateau Prieuré-Lichine, Margaux, Bordeaux.

Relaxed and understated nose that once agitated reveals lots of plum, then intense cherry and leathery terroir and a very faint licorice on the back. Once opened up, subtle notes of tobacco make a pleasing appearance. The body is all business up front showing good structure and composition right out of the bottle. Leathery terroir carries through turning more mineraly. Cherry from the nose makes a brief encore before transitioning to a restrained finish capped by moderate tannic grip and spice.

Once opened, the finish turns creamy. I opened a 2012 vintage earlier this year and was absolutely enamored with it. So when the opportunity to try explore an almost 20 year old vintage I couldn’t resist. This wine is perfect right now. This Chateau presents great value among its peers. Looking at my notes it is remarkable how consistent this Chateau is.

Have you explored Margaux yet? You absolutely must for a proper introduction to what Bordeaux wines are all about. A votre santé! 😁🍷🍷🍷

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