Wednesday 02 May, 2012

A Mighty River: Tasting and Educating on Ribera del Duero

2011-06-09_19-31-27_645




I had a great experience this Spring taking part in the Drink Ribera campaign, getting to know Ribera del Duero Brand Ambassador and US Trade Liason April Cullom, and being able to share my own knowledge through some retail tastings. Ribera is unquestionably one of my favorite regions, both for its philosophies and its output. […]




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At Glendale, CA's Remedy Wine & Liquor

At Glendale, CA's Remedy Wine & Liquor

I had a great experience this Spring taking part in the Drink Ribera campaign, getting to know Ribera del Duero Brand Ambassador and US Trade Liason April Cullom, and being able to share my own knowledge through some retail tastings.

Ribera is unquestionably one of my favorite regions, both for its philosophies and its output. I appreciate the passion that clearly goes into the wines, almost all of which are produced by family estates, and estate wines (as required by law!) that encourage, if not force, the winemakers into their individual expressions. Tempranillo is a very terroir-driven grape, and the high altitude micro-climates of this Northern Spanish region (actually four regions, linked together by the river valley) give the grape such a variety of flavor you might have a hard time identifying some of these wines as cousins, no less brothers!

With owner Steve Zanotti at Orange, CAs impressive Wine Exchange

With owner Steve Zanotti at Orange, CAs impressive Wine Exchange

The best of them, though individual, are juicy, complex, balanced and pair excellently with a variety of foods (or just a bowl of Marcondas). In addition to the wines mentioned in my Tasting Panel piece below (which are currently unavailable in the US...hopefully not for long), some of the Riberas I can recommend without hesitation include:

(listed roughly in price range from lowest to highest)

Torremoron 2008, 2009

Torres Celeste Blue Crianza 2007

Condado de Haza 2006

Ortega Fournier 2005 'Spiga'

Felix Callejo Reserva 2004

Convento San Francisco 2005

J.C. Conde Neo 'Christina' 2005

Each of these is an excellent bottle--and the first three I would call incredible values. Disfrutas!

Click to enlarge

Click to enlarge

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED JULY 2011


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