Baron de Magana 2007
Other Red Blends from Navarra, Spain
Barón de Magaña an estate-bottled wine made by Bodegas Viña Magaña in the Navarra DO, just northeast of Rioja. Spanish wine aficionados who consider Navarra strictly a source for bulk wines would do well to reflect on what owner Juan Magaña has accomplished. Thirty years ago, Juan had a vision. After researching the best wines in the world, he decided to grow Bordeaux grapes in Navarra. He bought Merlot cuttings from a nursery that sold to famous châteaux in St. Emilion and Pomerol, most notably the hallowed Château Pétrus. A pioneer in Navarra, over the years Juan's bodega has become a reference point for quality in the region. At once, Baron shows power and bright flavors with no green characters, with a structure that is integrated and harmonious. The southern district of Navarra has limestone that imparts characters of minerality and acidity that are unique to this place. Of the varieties grown on the estate, Merlot is best able to capture the minerality of the soil.
35% Merlot (planted in 1975), 35% Cabernet Sauvignon (planted in 1976), 20% Tempranillo (planted in 1989) and 10% Syrah.
Wine Spectator - "A sensational offering from Navarra, the 2007 Baron de Magana is an intriguing blend of 35% Merlot, 35% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Tempranillo and 10% Syrah aged 14 months in primarily new oak. As its composition suggests, it is somewhat Bordeaux like with lots of black currant and cherry fruit intermixed with notions of forest, underbrush and barrique. Full-bodied, dense, rich and intense."
Baron de Magana Winery
Navarra is rapidly becoming recognized as the source of some of Spain's best value wines. The Magana brothers were among the first to see the potential of the area, especially for the classic Bordeaux grape varieties. During the 1970's they planted Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Malbec in their 60 hectares of vineyards. Later they added Syrah and Tempranillo. View all Baron de Magana Wines
About NavarraView a map of Navarra wineries Garnacha is the primary grape here, producing rosados in large quantities for the locals and for export. Navarra is also a top Cava producer.
The most popular red varieties of Spain include Tempranillo and Garnacha (Grenache). Whites don't garner quite as much recognition, but there are some regional varieties not to be missed, like Albarino and Verdejo. The popular red regions of Spain include Rioja, known for its outstanding wines of the Tempranillo grape; Ribera del Duero, producing high quality reds from Tempranillo and Garnacha; Galacia, with the sub-region of Rias Baixas, home to the deliciously crisp and floral Albarino grape; and Priorat, a region increasing in popularity with its high-quality cult reds. Other regions of note are Rueda, growing the Verdejo grape, La Mancha, a wide desert region, covered in the most planted white variety in the world, Airen, and Jumilla, making wines based on Monastrell (Mourvedre).
Spain's wine laws are based on the Denominacion de Origen (DO) classification system, devised in the 1930's. A four tiered system, the most basic level is Vina de Mesa (table wine) followed by Vino de la Tierra (country wine), DO and at the top DOC. Currently, only Rioja and Priorat have DOC status, while over 65 DO's scatter the country.
Most DO regions are classified and regulated by how long they age the wines. On a red wine label, one may find the terms Crianza, Reserva or Gran Reserva, denoting the wine's barrel and bottle time. Crianza is usually two years between barrel and bottle (the time in each depends on the DO and/or the winemaker), Reserva up to 4 years and Gran Reserva 5 – 6 years. Classifications of each region and wine are controlled by the region's Consejo Regulador.
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Alcohol By Volume GuideMost wine ranges from 10-16% alcohol by volume. Some varietals tend to have higher (for example Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon) or lower alcohol levels (Pinot Noir and many white varietals), but there is always some variation from producer to producer. Some wine falls outside of this range, for instance Port weighs in closer to 20%, while Muscat and Riesling are usually a bit below 10%.
Wine Style Guide
Light & Crisp
- Light to medium bodied wines that are high in acid and light to medium fruit. Typically no oak.
Fruity & Smooth
- Light to medium bodied wines with lots of juicy fruit, typically medium acid and medium oak.
Rich & Creamy
- Full bodied wines that have typically undergone malo-lactic fermentation and/or spent time in oak.