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Baron de Magana 2007

Other Red Blends from Navarra, Spain
  • WS94
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Winemaker Notes

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.

Critical Acclaim

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WS 94
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.
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Baron de Magana

Baron de Magana

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Baron de Magana, , Spain
Baron de Magana
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.

California

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Responsible for the vast majority of American wine production, if California were a country, it would be the world’s fourth largest wine-producing nation. The state’s diverse terrain and microclimates allow for an incredibly wide-ranging selection of wine styles, and unlike tradition-bound Europe, experimentation is more than welcome here. Wineries range from boutique to massive corporations, and price and quality are equally varied—plenty of inexpensive bulk wine is made in the Central Coast area, while Napa is responsible for some of the world’s most prestigious and expensive “cult” wines.

Just about every style of wine you can imagine is made in California, from bone dry to unctuously sweet, still to sparkling, light and fresh to rich and full-bodied. Each AVA and sub-AVA has its own distinct personality. In the Napa Valley, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and other Bordeaux varieties dominate, as well as Sauvignon Blanc. Sonoma County is best known for Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, and Zinfandel. The Central Coast has carved out a niche with Rhône blends based on Grenache and Syrah, while Mendocino has found success with Alsatian varieties such as Riesling and Gewürztraminer. With all the diversity that California has to offer, it is certain that any wine lover will find something to get excited about.

Pinot Noir

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One of the most difficult yet rewarding grapes to grow, Pinot Noir is commonly referred to by winemakers as the “heartbreak grape.” However, the greatest red wines of Burgundy prove that it is unquestionably worth the effort. More reflective than most varieties of the land on which it is grown, Pinot Noir prefers a cool climate, requires low yields to achieve high quality, and demands care in the vineyard and lots of attention in the winery. It is an important component of Champagne and the only variety permitted in red Burgundy. Pinot Noir enjoys immense popularity internationally, most notably in Oregon, California, and New Zealand.

In the Glass

Pinot Noir Is all about red fruit—strawberry, raspberry, and cherry. It is relatively pale in color with soft tannins and lively acidity. It ranges in body from very light to the heavier side of medium, typically landing somewhere in the middle—giving it extensive possibilities for food pairing. With age (of which the best examples can handle an astounding amount), it can develop hauntingly beautiful characteristics of fresh earth, autumn leaves, and truffles.

Perfect Pairings

Pinot’s healthy acidity cuts through the oiliness of pink-fleshed fish like salmon, ocean trout, and tuna. Its mild mannered tannins don’t fight with spicy food, and give it enough structure to pair with all sorts of poultry—chicken, quail, and especially duck. As the namesake wine of Boeuf Bourguignon, it can even match with heavier fare. Pinot Noir is also very vegetarian-friendly—most notably with any dish that features mushrooms.

Sommelier Secret

Pinot Noir is dangerously drinkable, highly addictive, and has a bad habit of emptying the wallet. Look for affordable but still delicious examples from Germany (as Spätburgunder), Italy (as Pinot Nero), Chile, New Zealand, and France’s Loire Valley and Alsace regions.

PBC9160554_2007 Item# 121096

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