Saturday, November 29, 2008

Finca Omblancas Denuno Petite Verdot

I enjoy the wines of the Jumilla region of Spain, especially because they generally are Monastrell based (a grape that often pleases me immensely) and usually are excellent values. I recently ran across a Jumilla wine that really intrigued me, as it was not predominantly Monastrell. In fact, it was made mostly from a grape that is more often just a blending grape, Petit Verdot.

Finca Omblancas is a family-owned winery located in Jumilla and they usually produce wines made from Monastrell. In 2002, the Rodriguez-Albendea family acquired the winery and estate. The estate includes the historic Perico Molina winery, which dates back to 1888, and the current winemaking facility built in 1978. The new owners updated the winery, restructured the vineyards, and added new vines. Though they grow mostly Monastrell, they also have vines of Cabernet Sauvignon, Petit Verdot and Syrah.

One of the lines of their portfolio are the Denuño wines, their “Crianza” wines which require a minimum of six months barrel aging and one year in bottle. They are considered to be full bodied, concentrated and complex wines. They are produced using estate grown grapes and the lines consists of three single varietal wines, Monastrell, Cabernet Sauvignon and Petit Verdot.

The 2005 Denuño Petit Verdot ($16.99) intrigued me as I so rarely find wines made mostly from Petit Verdot. And those I have seen usually impress me. This wine is a blend of 90% Petit Verdot, 5% Monastrell, and 5% Syrah and has an alcohol content of 14%. Only about 1200 cases or so were produced of this wine. The wine spent seven months in new and one year in old oak, French (80%), American (15%) and Eastern European (5%).

It was a dark red wine with an intriguing nose of blueberries and a touch of vanilla. The blueberries were also very prominent on the palate as well, quite lush and juicy. I love fresh blueberries so this wine's flavor really pleased me. It was a full-bodied wine, with restrained tannins and layers of subtle spices. The finish was long and satisfying. This wine certainly impressed me for the price and I think it is an excellent value. This wine also shows the potential of Petit Verdot on its own to make a luscious wine. This is a wine I highly recommend.

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