Wednesday, September 26, 2007

2004 Finca Villacreces Tinto

With my Spanish vacation so near, I opted for a Spanish wine last evening to get me in the mood. And I decided to go for one of my newer acquisitions, a highly rated wine for which I have read much good press. But, would it meet those expectations?

The 2004 Finca Villacreces Tinto, Ribera Del Duero ($38) is from an estate next to the famed Vega Sicilia. The Villacreces estate generally tries for a compromise between the old and new style wines of Ribera del Duero.

Tinto Fino is related to Tempranillo though some experts claim there are significant differences between the two varietals, especially in older Tinto Fino. Traditionally, Tinto Fino is the primary varietal though winemakers have been adding some traditional Bordeaux varietals to their wines, especially for some additional structure to help them age.

Jay Miller of the Wine Advocate awarded the wine 95 points and stated: "The 2004 Tinto is 86% Tempranillo, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon, and 4% Merlot fermented in barrel and aged in French oak for 16 months. Inky purple, it has an expressive bouquet of mocha/espresso, pain grille, graphite, wild blueberrys, and blackberry liqueur. This is followed by a full-bodied, full-flavored, plush wine with layers of spicy black fruits, impeccable balance, and a long, pure finish. The tannins are well concealed but this superb effort should evolve for 4-6 years and drink well through 2027."

I found this wine to be quite dark in color, a rich purple. It is certainly a powerful wine, with strong flavors of dark berries and spice, as well as a touch of smoke. It is full-bodied and has a very long finish. The tannins are definitely there but do not overwhelm. This wine has a lot going on in it. There is much complexity to this wine. It is certainly a wine to savor. I very much enjoyed this wine. A strongly recommended Drink & Buy.

So what did I pair with this wine? Pizza! Specifically, a meat lover's pizza with meatball, sausage, salami, ham, and bacon. Sure, this is not your usual pizza wine but I think it went well with all of the different meats. This is probably a wine for a nice steak but I certainly enjoyed it with the pizza too.

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