New wines coming this week: Taste them Saturday April 28,2012 at the shopFood & Wine, Free Weekly Saturday Wine (and sometimes spirits) Tastings, What's New?
The bottle on the right is a red table wine from the Carinena region of Spain in Aragon south of the city of Zaragoza. Just as Aragon is the birthplace of Grenache (Garnacha) Carinena is the birthplace of the grape known as Carignan in France and Sardinia. In Spain it is more commonly called Mazuelo. They also grow plenty of Tempranillo, Grenache and other reds as well as Viura, Moscatel and other whites.
The climate is continental with long hot summers and cold winters and the grapes are under heavy stress from drought. These hardships for the grapes make for great wines for us. Hey you gotta suffer if you want to sing the blues. This wine is called Virgen del Aguila Senorio del Aguila Gran Reserva 2001 after the Sierra de la Virgen mountain range and the majestic golden eagle (aguila) found in the region. It is a blend of Tempranillo, Grenache and Cabernet Sauvignon aged 24 months in oak and 36 months in bottle before release. It is an impressive wine who’s youthful density and fruit belies its age. It is also a great deal.
The bottle on the left, that would be the brown one, is a “sticky wine” made of Pedro Ximenez juice with an average age of 30 years! Though the winery site doesn’t say so explicitly, they refer to hand blending and I strongly suspect it is blended in a solera system of barrels where a stack of barrels are fractionally blended from top to bottom. As they like to say the old wine educates the young wine. It is the way sherries are blended. Anyway this produces an average age of 30 years. The Pedro Ximenez variety is actually one of the sherry grapes and they like to call it “the cream in cream sherry” It is a rich concentrated raisiny wine with all sort of flavors from the long slow aging and slow oxidation. Definitely a treasure and a great deal as well.