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El Coto Crianza 2006

Tempranillo from Rioja, Spain
  • WE88
13% ABV
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13% ABV

Winemaker Notes

This wine shows aromas of fresh, crushed red cherries and spices, with vanilla and oak hints. With a soft, long character in the mouth, the wine shows intense red fruit that combines the subtle strawberry and cherry aromas typical of Rioja's Tempranillo grape with the expressive vanilla-coconut aromas of the American oak barrels. It is the classic Rioja marriage of wine and wood.

El Coto de Rioja Crianza is one of the most popular wines in all of Spain and one of the top selling Rioja's in the world. Year in/ year out this wine exhibits character, complexity and value unmatched in the category.

Critical Acclaim

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WE 88
Wine Enthusiast
An oaky, modern-style wine with a staunch mocha and vanilla influence, but the fruit is ripe and rich enough to handle it. Spicy and grainy on the nose, with vanilla and resin seeping through. The palate remains woody but is full of berry flavors, while the omnipresent barrel influence carries onto the rich, ripe finish.
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El Coto

El Coto

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El Coto, Rioja, Spain
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The first wines of El Coto de Rioja were introduced to the Spanish market with the 1970 vintage in 1975. So great was their success that two years later, the decision to double the capacity of the wine maturing in their cellars was taken in order to export part of the production. Their growth has continued unabated for 25 years, and now El Coto has been launched in the United States market through Frederick Wildman and Sons. Today, the world is looking for wines with character and elegance; moderate in alcohol content, well balanced and harmonious with refined cuisine. El Coto is an excellent example of a new generation of quality Spanish wines, which conforms to prevailing tastes.

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 and a bright acidity, Tempranillo is the star of Spain’s Rioja and Ribera del Duero regions and important throughout most of Spain. Depending on location, it takes on a few synonyms; in Penedès, it is known as Ull de Llebre and in Valdepeñas, goes by Cencibel. Furthermore in Portugal, known as Tinta Roriz, it is a key component both in Port and the dry red wines of the Douro. The New World regions of California, Washington and Oregon have all had success with Tempranillo, producing a ripe, amicable and fruit-dominant style of red.

In the Glass

Tempranillo produces medium-weight reds with strawberry and black fruit characteristics and depending on yield, growing conditions and winemaking, can produce hints of spice, toast, leather, tobacco, herb or vanilla.

Perfect Pairings

Tempranillo’s modest, fine-grained tannins and good acidity make it extremely food friendly. Pair these 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 naming system is in place to indicate how much time the wine has spent in both barrel and bottle before release. Rioja labeled Joven (a fresh and fruity style) spends a year or less in oak, whereas Gran Reserva (complex and age-worthy) must be matured for a minimum of two years in oak and three years in bottle before release. Requirements on Crianza and Reserva fall somewhere in between.

SWS81874_2006 Item# 109909