A blend of 90% Tempranillo and 10% Graciano y Mazuelo.
A dark cherry colour with good depth. Balsamic aromas with hints of ripe fruit, complex and spicy. The attack is fresh and light, with soft, rounded tannins. The finish proves persistent
with some reminders of toasted oak. Its passage through the mouth is pleasant and elegant, fresh and easy to drink.
Marques de Riscal Winery
Wines of the Herederos de Marqués de Riscal has always been a leading and pioneering company in the wine producing sector. In 1858, it became the first winery in the Rioja to produce wines following the Bordeaux method and in 1972, it was the first winery to promote the Rueda Designation of Origin, where it produced its famous Marqués de Riscal white wines.
Marqués de Riscal sells its products in over 70 countries and its wines have enjoyed the highest international distinctions as well as numerous awards and mentions in the media.
View all Marques de Riscal Wines
This highly regarded area of 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.
The 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 third largest country in production, Spain ranks first in land under vine. Diversity and innovation are the key factors bringing Spain back into the world wine market.
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.
I really liked this wine. For the price, it is quite amazing. Smooth, nothing acrid about it and I can serve this to one certain French friend who spends copious amounts of money on wine and he enjoys it.
I feel that this wines main flaw is that it's bouquet does not match is finish. When I smell the bouquet It seems extravagent and exciting, but when i taste it seems to roll quickly off the palate b/c it feels light bodied and doesnt have a lot of tannin or spiciness. Maybe I just like wines that are powerfull like... the Rentas de Fincas i just had from Rioja, or the ViNa Zaco , or even the Terra unica from Valencia.... I'm just learning Spanish wines... but these later three were a little less expensive yet I enjoyed much more as I felt they were more complex.
I have just started drinking spanish wines, and have been focusing on Rioja. I felt that this wine being 90% Tempirllio it lacks robust character. What I've began to love in Tempirillo's is their expresive, bold, spicy, ecesntric bouquets and flavors... and I feel that this Reserva is more one note, not very complex, and although full bodied, has a short finish and is just not very exciting to me. I'm a novice drinker so take this as you wish... but I feel that it isn't spicy at all and is a little tart. The last reserva I bought was a mix w/ Monstrell and was much better for 1/2 the price.
This wine is pleasant to the palate. A soft, velvety smooth texture. Nice hints of spice. A pleasant finish. I just bought the last 10 bottles from my local wine store to have a few for later. This bottle can be enjoyed by itself or is excellent with a nice red meat.
Most 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 & Fruity
Red wines that are more fruit-forward and lighter in tannin and body.
Smooth & Supple
Medium bodied reds that go down easy, with smooth tannins and supple fruit.
Earthy & Spicy
Wines where earthy and/or spicy dominate the flavors – typically medium to full body.
Big & Bold
Full bodied wines that have concentrated fruit and are higher in alcohol and/or tannins. Some need age.