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Wednesday, November 05, 2008

2001 Amaren Rioja Reserva

This Rioja was produced at Bodegas Luis Canas and is made from 100% Tempranillo aged for 18 months in French oak barrels. I have to admit it's nice to taste something from Spain because I've been doing so many reviews from Australia as of late and it's good to mix it up with something "Old World". On the nose I get a fruit expression of black cherry and a touch of dark raspberry but there is lots of secondary elements to note. Leather, soil, alcohol, and perhaps a small detection of brettanomyces are all aromas that become distinct if you analyze the bouquet closely. The longer in the glass the more the cherry shows, so I think it would be wise to decant this wine before consumption. On the palate this wine is quite ruff and shows a dose of unforgiving and bitter tannin. The cherry flavors are desperately trying to make their way though the green bitterness and oak flavors and it's almost hard to enjoy this wine. However, I do believe that this wine will improve with some additional bottle age and perhaps a longer decanting period. I'm not willing to write this wine off completely but like I said before it is slightly difficult to enjoy and for a reserve Rioja I think it should be a lot better sculpted. It almost gives me the feeling that they didn't bother cleaning the fruit, barrels, or the machinery and crushed a bunch of leaves, stems, and seeds into the juice. 79 points


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