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Saturday 25 February 2012

Bodegas Beronia Rioja Reserva 2006

This Bodegas Beronia Rioja Reserva 2006 is made by Gonzalez Byass and spends 18 months in oak, with  a further 4 years' bottle age. It is made from mainly Tempranillo, but with a little Graciano and Mazuelo added in.

Mazuelo is a synonym for Cariñena / Carignan - a warm-climate, work horse grape occasionally capable of greatness when made from old vines - whilst Graciano is native to Spain, grown mainly in Rioja and whilst usually blended is occasionally produced as a varietal wine.

Rioja is typically aged in American oak which gives more intense aromas of vanilla (always a clue in blind tastings), but this wine undergoes ageing in a mixture of French and American oaks.

Poured straight from the bottle (via a decanter) it is dark purple in the glass with an aged, brick-red hue around the rim.

On the nose, there are Pinot-esque aromas of mushroomy, truffley undergrowth, dark spice, and sour cherry, whilst the palate shows ripe black and red cherry fruit and vanilla spice with an aged mellow harmoniousness, soft tannins, a smooth texture and a gently grippy finish.

With 14% alcohol, it feels like a big wine, but it is also ripe, fruity and easy-drinking with enough complexity and age to rise above the everyday.

On re-sampling a day later, the texture has filled out on the palate and it feels more rounded overall - there is still plenty of ripe black cherry fruit and truffley, Pinot undergrowth on the nose, but the palate and finish are now more perfumed and overall it feels more harmonious.

Match the ripe sweetness of this wine with roast lamb or - for the vegetarians - a roasted cherry tomato and goat's cheese tart with caramelised red onions.

£12.99 from Ocado, it has an IWSC Silver Medal; provided for review.

The reverse Wine Snob has this to say: http://www.reversewinesnob.com/2011/11/bodegas-beronia-rioja-reserva-2006.html


Gonzalez Byass - http://www.gonzalezbyass.com/
Ocado - http://www.ocado.com/

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