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La Rioja Alta Vina Alberdi Reserva Tinto 2012

Tempranillo from Rioja, Spain
  • JS92
  • RP90
13.5% ABV
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  • W&S91
  • RP90
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4.2 35 Ratings
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4.2 35 Ratings
13.5% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Lively, medium garnet red with an intense pink rim. The nose stands out with intense, fresh aromas of ripe red fruit, wild strawberries, currants and raspberries against a balsamic background with notes of vanilla, toasted caramel, bakery, coffee and sweet mints. The palate is aromatic with good structure and balance and soft, amiable tannins. The aromatic harmony persists on the finish, with marked freshness and balance.

Viña Alberdi is characterized by a notable food-pairing versatility. It is an ideal companion to appetizers, snacks and barbecues, perfect with rice, pastas and stews, and great with lightly-grilled meat and fish.

Critical Acclaim

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JS 92
James Suckling
This is a very classic Rioja with dried fruit and hints of vanilla. Lots of plums and red fruit. Full-bodied, round and juicy. Exotic and beautiful. Very pretty 2012.
RP 90
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Cropped from an extremely dry year, the 2012 Viña Alberdi was saved by some rains in late September. The aging lasted two years, the first one in new American oak barrels and the second in used ones. It felt livelier than the 2011. This 2012 has some aromas of raw meat, with marked toast from the American oak (all the American oak barrels are built by their own coopers), with a good combination of fruit and spice, tradition and modernity. It's approachable and easy to drink, but a little more time in bottle should polish it even further.
Rating:90+
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La Rioja Alta

La Rioja Alta

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La Rioja Alta, Rioja, Spain
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Always evolving quality, elegance, innovation, evolution... They are the pillars on which the five founding families erected our winery in 1890 and built a way of living, feeling and producing wines of the highest quality that continue to evolve subtly, perfectly adapting to new tastes. This is how the permanent pursuit of excellence started; a pursuit that continues into the 21st century with identical enthusiasm. We draw the best from our winemaking tradition and wisdom —our own cooperage, manual racking, long ageing periods, etc.— and combine it with the most modern winemaking technology. Today, our wines are an international exemplar of the great wines of Rioja and our brands are present in the best restaurants across all continents.

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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 Oriental. Wines are typically a blend of fruit from all three, although specific sub-region (zonas), village (municipios) and vineyard (viñedo singular) wines can now be labeled. 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 Oriental 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 for 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, 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.

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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.

GSW0007_2012_2012 Item# 485129