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Faustino I Gran Reserva 2001

Tempranillo from Rioja, Spain
  • TP98
  • D97
  • WE91
13.5% ABV
  • WS93
  • WE91
  • WS90
  • WE92
  • W&S90
  • WE94
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3.9 254 Ratings
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3.9 254 Ratings
13.5% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Named Decanter Magazine's Top Wine released in 2013

Intense, bright cherry red. Aromatic and complex, with notes of tobacco, cedar and leather against a background of ripe fruit, jam and spices. Powerful yet velvety, with flavors of rich red fruit, licorice and minerals and smooth, ripe tannins.

Excellent with roasted lamb, duck, pork and beef. A great accompaniment to ham croquettes, hard cheeses, and sautéed vegetables.

Critical Acclaim

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TP 98
Tasting Panel
(85% Tempranillo, 10% Graciano, 5% Mazuelo) Deep ruby color; mushroom and rich, ripe and intense plum, black cherry and spice, tobacco, leather. Great acidity, crushed flowers, super long finish.
D 97
Decanter
Deliciously decadent, with extraordinary vitality on the palate and a long, unique finish. A jewel at this price. I have this wine full marks - it was perfect. I cannot think of any other wine, in this price range, that provides so much complexity, elegance, style, classicism and length.
WE 91
Wine Enthusiast
Rusty and mature looking, this is woodsy, dry and rooty on the nose, with whiffs of tree bark and tobacco running alongside cherry and berry notes. It’s mature, with flavors of stewed plum, herbs and spice that are straight from the textbook, while the finish is dry, earthy and showing core acidity.
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Faustino

Faustino

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Faustino, Rioja, Spain
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In the mid 1800s, Eleuterio Martinez Arzok took his first steps toward establishing himself as a producer and merchant of wines from the Rioja region of Spain. He started out by selling his wines in the Rioja and Basque regions, direct from the barrel. Much has changed since then and the winery he founded has since become known as one of the premier fine wine producers of the Rioja region.

In the late 1950s, his similarly adventurous descendant, Julio Faustino Martinez, launched the family-owned label in both national and international markets. Today, Bodegas Faustino is Rioja's largest exporter of Gran Reserva wines. The winner of numerous awards and gold medals in international competitions and tastings, Bodegas Faustino is a proud custodian of the Rioja region's growing international reputation as a source of truly world-class fine wines.

With 1600 acres of its own vineyards, Faustino is self-sufficient in producing its Reserva and Gran Reserva wines. The vineyards are located in the upper part of Rioja Alavesa at an altitude of between 1500 and 1800 feet. The climate is cool, influenced by the Atlantic Ocean, and the vines thrive in the chalky soil. The state-of-the-art Faustino winery has a stock of 45,000 barriques, 80% of which are American oak. The winery maintains a permanent stock of 9 million bottles of Reserva and Gran Reserva wines.

Highly regarded for distinctive and age-worthy red wines, Rioja is Spain’s most celebrated wine region and also home to whites of equivalent quality but lesser renown. 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 high alcohol which mainly serve to add body to a blend. While fresh and fruity Riojas labeled “Joven” undergo minimal aging before release, a hallmark of more serious Rioja wines is the aroma and flavor of new oak—traditionally American, which imparts characteristics of dill, coconut, vanilla, and spice to the wine. Tighter-grained, subtler French oak, however, is becoming increasingly common. Crianza and Reserva styles are aged at least one year in oak, and Gran Reserva at least two, 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, providing complex notes of red and black fruit, leather, and tobacco, while Garnacha supplies body and alcohol. In smaller percentages, Graciano and Mazuelo often serve as “seasoning” with additional flavors and aromas. These same varieties are responsible for flavorful dry rosés. White wines are made mostly from crisp, fresh Viura, which is usually blended with aromatic Malvasia and weighty Garnacha Blanca. White Rioja has traditionally been made in a nutty, oxidative style, though a bright, unoaked version is currently in vogue.

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.

SWS353801_2001 Item# 130091