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Bodegas Valdemar Conde de Valdemar Gran Reserva 2004

Tempranillo from Rioja, Spain
  • W&S90
0% ABV
  • W&S90
  • WE90
  • WS90
  • WE89
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Winemaker Notes

The 2004 Conde de Valdemar Gran Reserva is a blend of 85% Tempranillo, 10% Mazuelo, and 5% Graciano aged for 26 months in French and American oak. Made in a traditional style, it is already beginning to show aromatic complexity from its extended aging. Cedar, leather, Asian spices, incense, black cherry, and blackberry lead to a rich, elegant, plush wine in the style of the superb 2004 vintage. Flavorful, stylish, and lengthy, it will continue to blossom with several more years of cellaring and drink well through 2024.

Critical Acclaim

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W&S 90
Wine & Spirits
Ripened to pomegranate-scented blackness, this is an austere take on the 2004 vintage. There's a vegetal note in the tannins hinting at tobacco leaf and dried herbs, balancing the tart Bing cherry and dried red fruit character. A mature, lamby red.
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Bodegas Valdemar

Bodegas Valdemar

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Bodegas Valdemar, Rioja, Spain
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The Martinez Bujanda family, producers of Valdemar wines, founded their original winery in 1889. They own 820 acres of vineyards, which makes Valdemar one of the largest estates in the Rioja. A new winery was built in 1984 to take advantage of modern technologies, integrating both new and time-honored traditions of winemaking.

Highly regarded for distinctive and age-worthy red wines, Rioja is Spain’s most celebrated wine region. Made up of three different sub-regions of varying elevation: Rioja Alta, Rioja Alavesa and Rioja Baja. Wines are typically a blend of fruit from all three, although single-zone wines are beginning to gain in popularity. Rioja Alta, at the highest elevation, is considered to be the source of the brightest, most elegant fruit, while grapes from the warmer and drier Rioja Baja produce wines with deep color and higher alcohol, which can add great body and richness to a blend.

Fresh and fruity Riojas labeled, Joven, (meaning young) see minimal aging before release, but more serious Rioja wines undergo multiple years in oak. Crianza and Reserva styles are aged around six months to one year in oak, and Gran Reserva at least two (plus three years in bottle), but in practice this maturation period is often quite a bit longer—up to about fifteen years.

Tempranillo provides the backbone of Rioja red wines, adding complex notes of red and black fruit, leather, toast and tobacco, while Garnacha supplies body. In smaller percentages, Graciano and Mazuelo (Carignan) often serve as “seasoning” with additional flavors and aromas. These same varieties are responsible for flavorful dry rosés.

White wines, typically balancing freshness with complexity, are made mostly from crisp, fresh Viura. Some whites are blends of Viura with aromatic Malvasia, and then barrel fermented and aged to make a more ample, richer style of white.

Tempranillo

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Notoriously food-friendly with soft tannins, modest alcohol, and bright acidity, Tempranillo is the star of Spain’s Rioja and Ribera del Duero regions. It is important throughout Spain as well as in Portugal, where it is known as Tinta Roriz and is an important component of Port wines and the table wines of the Douro region that Port calls home. California, Washington, and Oregon have all had moderate success with Tempranillo, producing a riper, more fruit-forward style of wine.

In the Glass

Tempranillo is often aged in new oak for the integration of spicy, woodsy, and herbal flavors, often with hints of vanilla, coconut, and dill. The grape itself produces medium-weight reds with bright red and black fruit aromas and hints of spice, leather, and tobacco, with no shortage of flavor.

Perfect Pairings

Tempranillo’s modest, fine-grained tannins and bright acidity make it extremely food friendly, pairing with a wide variety of Spanish-inspired dishes—especially grilled lamb chops, a rich chorizo and bean stew, or paella.

Sommelier Secret

The Spanish take their oak aging requirements very seriously, especially in Rioja. There, a system is in place to indicate on the label how much time the wine has spent in both barrel and bottle before release, which is helpful to the consumer trying to determine the style of an unfamiliar wine. Rioja can range from Joven (fresh, fruity, and unoaked) to Gran Reserva (complex and oxidized from extended barrel aging), with Crianza and Reserva in between.

RPT87533399_2004 Item# 114181