Jaros Ribera del Duero 2002
This is a bottle of Spanish red wine given to me by my folks for Christmas in 2008, and saved for a special occasion. There is something about bottles of wine that are given to us as gifts that makes us want to save them and carefully choose the occasion to open them. I had been reserving this bottle for the right moment, but approaching almost a year in our “cellar” I decided it had to be opened soon. I believe that it was the end of a tough week, close to the end of a tough year, and a good bottle of Spanish red wine was just the antidote to our moods.
In fact, it was one of the most delightful bottles of wine I’ve ever had. Thankfully, this Tempranillo-based wine had aged well, and as we drank it over a three hour period it continued to open up and bloom, changing almost minute to minute. It started off as a very good bottle of European-style red wine (earthy, medium dry, hint of fruit), but loosened up well-aged fruit and depth of character that towards the end had a very pleasing caramelized character. I’m no expert by any means, but I’d say we opened this bottle at the peak of its bell curve. Perhaps it was our moods, our expectations, or the wine itself, but it hit the spot!
I’m not very familiar with Spanish wines, but I have been to Spain and in my limited exposure I’m coming to believe that they are my favorite red wines (and roses), with Italy a close second. Ironically, we drink mostly French reds because of access to the expertise and selection at our local Kermit Lynch.
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