TN: Spain and Italy Blind Tasting

Interesting blind tasting theme – Italy or Spain. Turned out that the wines favoured the latter, probably because we had done far more Italian events and everyone had some Spanish wines they were looking for a chance to bring out.

2001 R. López de Heredia Rioja Reserva Viña Tondonia blanco – fair bit of colour and at the beginning a slightly oxidized nose, but as the nose opened, that abated and some nice dried apricot came to the forefront. Lots of acidity. Nice old style white Rioja.

2014 Maquina & Tabla Ruede Verdejo – light colour, crisp fresh hints of pear and lime with a little nuttiness underneath. Excellent. Only 3400 bb made.

1971 Torres Gran Coronas Black Label – what a great way to start! 80% cabernet, 20% carignane and the rest cab franc ad tempranillo. Colour mature with slightly browning edges, very nice mature red fruit nose that could have tricked one into thinking it a claret, good acidity. Great shape, although it did fade for those that held it in their glass for too long.

1958 Serafino Barbaresco – this was a real surprise! We had people thinking it was a 1990s wine due to the excellent colour depth and presentation. It showed a lovely cherry nose, some tar in the finish and had good acid levels. A survivor!

1981 Bodegas Riojanas Rioja Monte Real Reserva – mellow oaky nose (obviously American oak, unlike the showing on the Torres, which may have been American but wasn’t obvious). Some fairly ripe fruit in the nose as well, smooth and with good length. Another older wine if good shape.

2004 R. López de Heredia Rioja Reserva Viña Bosconia – some nice caramel and smoke in the nose, smooth on palate and with medium length.

2000 Tommasi Crearo Conca d’Oro Veronese IGT – fairly dark red, with a notably ripe nose, a clue to it’s origin, pretty good flavour intensity and medium length. Better than I had thought it would show. Mostly corvina and oseleta.

2004 Bodegas Muga Rioja Gran Reserva Prado Enea – this one surprised me as I have some in the cellar, as yet untouched. Quite dark colour and a dark ripe fruit nose – black cherries, vanilla and spice, concentrated and ripe in the mouth and needs quite a long time to come around. If you have it, stow it away and forget about it!

2001 Mas Doix Priorat Salanques – the first bottle of this I’ve opened and it showed an intense fruit nose with hints of anise, and oaky spiciness. Concentrated wine with soft tannins and a long finish. No rush!

Then with foie gras terrine we had :

Alvear Pedro Ximénez Montilla-Moriles Solera 1927 - brown wine with a tobacco, raisin and prune nose, very sweet but reasonably well balanced.

1997 Quinta do Crasto Porto – whoa! Hot alcoholic nose, and awkward on palate. This wine hasn’t melded together yet and only time will tell if it will come together or not. Surprised that it was quite this backward.