Monday, December 13, 2010

2000 Bodegas Navalon Valdepeñas Anciano Gran Reserva (Spain, Castilla-La Mancha, Valdepeñas)

Well, here it is a Monday night, and what better to drink a Tempranillo with than some homemade fajitas?  OK, I can think of plenty of other things, but we'll give this one a shot anyway. Popped and poured this tonight and poured into a Riedel XL glass where it decanted for about a half hour. Nice red color in the glass. 

The nose was not what I expected in the least, and I was really waiting for a sweet vanilla nose, crossed with some serious wood.  Not oak, I am talking straight wood, 2x4, but that was not the case at all.  Instead, I got a nice nose of dark black cherry, strawberry, and spice.  There is a bit of cedar on the nose as well, and maybe a touch of blueberry and smoked paprika.  Definitely a good nose, and surpisingly, the nose smells very young. 

My question in regards to that is, do they age this wine in the barrel for 10 years?  Or is it in the barrel for 5 years, and then in the bottle for 5 years?  UPDATE:  according to one of our know it all readers, this wine is aged 3 years in oak, then another 2 years in the bottle for a total of 5 years.  Somehow, this does not add up to 10 years, so please know it all reader, explain your math to all of us.  Where does that other 5 years come from?  Maybe the grapes are left on the vines for 5 years after they are ripe?  LOL! 

On the palate, this is drinking very well, and I found this to drink even better with food.  I tasted this before I took a bite of the fajitas, and I got some nice strawberry and raspberry on the palate.  This wine has a nice acidity to it, and plenty of backbone, but it is all well integrated.  The alcohol is not offensive in the least, and the tannins are there, but nice and smooth. 

For a Spanish tempranillo, this is indeed a heck of a great QPR, and there is nothing at all to be skeptical about.  To slap a $10-$15 price tag on this bottle is absolutely genius to me, and this is definitely a food friendly wine.  But I don't think it needs to be a Spanish inspired dish.  I could see drinking this with pizza on a Wednesday night, or even on a Friday or Saturday.  Or I could even drink this with burgers off the grill.  Regardless of what you want to eat with this, I think it will be a very food friendly wine.

All in all, what is there to say here other than genius?  This is a nice wine at a great price, and 88 point worthy.  We'll see if it gets any better tomorrow night.  Cheers!


Anonymous said...

The wine is swill and if you know wine, then you know that a GR is 3yrs in oak; 2 yrs in bottle and released 5 years after harvest on Dec 1 - wine is stored on its side.
This wine was stored upright. Not common in Europe. As to the cliches
used to attest to the wine...could not come from someone so confused about Spanish wine laws. Remember the teacher you disliked most in school? It's me! Do your homework.

NJFoodies said...

I may not be the intelligent teacher like you are, however, I am smart enough to figure out that 3 years in oak plus 2 years in the bottle adds up to 5, not 10. This bottle clearly says aged 10 years.

As for someone "confused about Spanish wine laws," please refresh my memory as to where I ever claimed to know anything about Spanish wines. Our cellar is 0.62% Spanish, so what does that tell you?

As for doing my homework, my homework is done California, Oregon, Washington State, France, and Italy. My passion for wine stems from these places, so these are what I spend my time studying.

A little lesson for you, if you want to have your comments seem more credible, sign in with an ID and show your identity...

Anonymous said...

It's not that difficult ;)
10 Years - 3 Years = 7 Years agged in the bottle
Gran reserva means a MINIMUM of 2 Years in Barrels and another 3 Years in the bottle, but it's Open end.