Bodegas Muga Torre Muga 2005
Tempranillo from Rioja, Spain
Black-cherry color with dark garnet hues at the edge. On the nose it reflects the perfect ripeness of its grapes and the elegance of its wood, with first fine spicy aromas coming to the fore and then jammy dark-berried fruit, as well as balsamic and mineral nuances. Profound on the palate, lively yet silky-smooth tannins, full of flavor, supple and long in the finish.
The Wine Advocate - "The 2005 Torre Muga is composed of 75% Tempranillo, 15% Mazuelo, and 10% Graciano. Purple-colored and made in a more international style, it presents a brooding bouquet of pain grille, mineral, scorched earth, incense, and blackberry. Massive on the palate, the wine has tons of material, great density, and 6-8 years of cellaring potential. This packed and stacked effort will have a drinking window extending from 2017 to 2045."
Wine Enthusiast - "A rich, bacony, black fruit monster with deep, molten flavors and immense body and tannic grab. A bruising wine with boysenberry, blackberry, mint, licorice and chocolate for primary flavors, and then lemony oak as a backdrop. Young, tannic and wild now; best from 2011 through 2015."
International Wine Cellar - "Vivid ruby. Exotic aromas of raspberry and blackberry preserves, cherry-vanilla, cola, incense and potpourri. Weighty, creamy red and dark berry flavors are sweetened by vanillin oak and enlivened by pepper and spice qualities. The dark berry notes build with air and carry through the long, sweet finish. Very exotic stuff; give it a few years of bottle aging to let the oak and fruit harmonize."
Wine Spectator - "Racy and vivid, this modern red brims with black raspberry and blueberry fruit, backed by spicy oak, with cinnamon and mineral accents. The velvety texture is framed by well-integrated tannins. Drink now through 2018."
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Bodegas Muga Winery
The Muga wine cellars were founded in 1932 by Isaac Muga Martínez who originated from a family with strong ties to the winemaking industry. On the death of the founder in 1969, his children Manuel, Isabel and Isaac Muga Caño took over the reins.
Two years later in 1971, they moved their headquarters to their present location in the traditional Station District on the outskirts of Haro. Bodegas Muga has continued to grow as the years have passed but it has never lost the spirit or aptitude of a family-run company.
The winery controls every step of the viticultural and vinification process from the vineyards to making their own barrels and fermenting and aging the wine entirely in oak. Muga is one of only six estates in the world that owns its own cooperage and they import the oak directly from the United States and France. Bodegas Muga is one of the oldest, most elegant and traditional Rioja producers. View all Bodegas Muga Wines
About RiojaView a map of Rioja wineries (ree-OH-hah) Spain makes some of the best Tempranillo-based wines in the world. Once the only DOCa (recently joined by Priorat in 2001), Rioja is divided into 3 sub-regions: Rioja Baja, Rioja Alta, Rioja Alavesa. There are 4 red varieties and 3 white varieties allowed in the Rioja DOC. Tempranillo definitely takes center stage, followed by Garnacha (Grenache)), which is sometimes added for body, then Graciano and Mazuelo (Carignan). The region also makes roses. For whites, the main grape is Viura (or Macebo), producing fresh, early-drinking wines. Malvasia, the grape that was once the most planted white, is found less often.
Notable FactsThe Rioja wine trade is somewhat confusing. Grapes are typically brought to a merchant's bodega from one of the 20,000+ growers in the region, or via a cooperative. The wine is then bottled and labelled by that bodega. Rioja's Consejo Regulador keeps track of all vineyards and bodegas to make sure they are following the DOCa regulations. Put in place to ensure quality, the system also controls prices.
As with the rest of Spain, the wine label may state Crianza, Reserva or Gran Reserva, depending on barrel & bottle maturation. Crianzas are usually found within two years of the vintage and offer fresh, ripe wines. Reserva and Gran Reserva will be found a few years after the vintage, as the bodega will be aging the wines in barrel and bottle before release. Both typically show more secondary characteristics of spice and oak ageing.
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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