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Sunday, 9 October 2011

Viña Real Rioja 2008 Barrel Fermented

White Rioja is generally something of an also-ran compared to the region's more well-known red wines - rather like white Bordeaux.

Perhaps this is no co-incidence as Rioja became a home-from-home for Bordelais winemakers after the outbreak of phylloxera in the 1860s and they brought many of their techniques with them.

One of these was extensive use of oaking and traditionally, white Rioja was heavy and oxidised in an old-school sort of way.

Made from 100% Viura, this barrel-fermented wine from CVNE's Viña Real, however, makes more deft use of new American oak to add body and some vanilla sweetness without the heavy oxidative notes.

In the glass, it is a bright golden colour with a toasty, leesy nose.

The palate is lemony with ripe apples-and-pears acidity and a touch of pineapple.

There is some vanilla sweetness from new American oak and a savoury leesy fullness.

With a few hours' aeration in the decanter, the oaking becomes more prominent and interesting, the finish longer and more intensely complex.

It will definitely repay some cellaring or, if you open now, don't be afraid to give it a good couple of hours in the decanter.

Its relative neutrality, good acidity and a ripe savouriness makes it very food friendly and it will stand up to meaty fish, chicken or pasta served with creamy sauce - an autumnal wild mushroom risotto would be just perfect with this.

£9.49 from Majestic, Corks Out, The Clifton Cellars, Liquid Treasure, www.wine-studio.co.uk, http://www.everywine.co.uk/

Provided for review.

Links

CVNE - http://www.cvne.com/web/
Viña Real - http://www.cvne.com/web/bodegas.php?bod=2
Majestic - http://www.majestic.co.uk/
Corks Out - http://www.corksout.com/
The Clifton Cellars - http://cliftoncellars.co.uk/
Liquid Treasure - http://www.liquidtreasure.co.uk/
www.wine-studio.co.uk - http://www.wine-studio.co.uk/
www.everywine.co.uk - http://www.everywine.co.uk/

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