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.