Wine region / Country
Dominio de Tares Cepas Viejas 2008 (2 bottles)
Luna Beberide Finca La Cuesta 2010 (2 bottles)
Flor de Brezo 2010 (2 bottles)
Normal retail price: £59.62
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Red Crianza. Dominio de Tares Bierzo, Spain Mencia
Bottle: £10.04 club members / £11.40 non-members
As its name clearly indicates, Dominio de Tares Cepas Viejas is made using Mencia grapes grown on vines over 60 years old, from vineyards cultivated on terraces and hill-slopes with gravel and slate soils, a location that contributes to their ripeness and elegance. In appearance it displays a dark Picota cherry colour with good density and slow-running tears, and releases fine aromas in the glass: ripe fresh fruit, a little more red than what we will find on the palate, but both are there, spicy notes of pepper and cocoa, with lactic and protein notes in the foreground, and some fresh aromas that appear in crescendo at the same time as others emerge of a smoky, earthy nature, along with biscuits and cinnamon. Quite a complex entity that is amazingly rounded and elegantly balanced.
On the palate, it follows the same pattern, although the fruit ripeness identifies better with black fruit. Having a sweet entry, it is intense, medium-bodied and light in the mouth, juicy, with good persistence and a slightly bitter finish, not at all harsh. A great classic.
Veal steak / to enjoy on its own / marinated meats
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Red Crianza. Bodegas y Viñedos Luna Beberide Bierzo, Spain Mencia
Bottle: £7.12 club members / £7.88 non-members
Finca La Cuesta is a fruit-laden wine, smooth, elegant and mineral (the soils are clay-calcareous and decomposed slate), and has a very accessible nature, which is particularly pleasing. In appearance it is glyceric, a dark Picota cherry colour, clean and of medium density, and both on the nose and palate it is complex and fine. It displays a wide range of notes, to include leather, balsamic, mineral and spicy, combining well with the fresh aromas of wild fruit and honeycomb. There is a smooth but vigorous entry on the palate, it has spirit and is intense and fruit-forward, with good structure. This is a wine that shows purity and nobility. It has remarkable power and tannins that augur well for a good evolution, and, if we have to find a weakness, we might point out that it is not very long, as its finish is a little impaired due to the presence of rather edgy yet not harsh acidity, which will eventually fade over time, but compensated by that delightful complexity which increases even more with some aeration in the glass. A fine Mencia and a fine wine.
Oven-cooked meats / roast beef / venison stew
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Red Crianza. Bodegas y Viñedos Mengoba Bierzo, Spain Mencia
Bottle: £9.25 club members / £10.52 non-members
Just like the Mengoba Mencia, Flor de Brezo is made by means of an integral vinification system, which means the whole production and ageing process is carried out in the same barrel, using grapevines aged between 50 and 70 years old. By this method, they succeed in extracting all the aromatic potential of the grapes and obtain an accessible wine, particularly fruit-laden and aromatic, with subtle notes of wood, easy to drink and perfect to enjoy. That is Flor de Brezo in essence.
On the nose, it is adorable, yet initially disconcerting with so much complexity: extremely interesting aromas, from intense fresh fruit to spicy aromas, mineral hints, floral too! (naturally its name had already suggested this to us), a lovely array of very fine aromas. On the palate this is a serious wine, with a smooth, generous entry; it is juicy, powerful and intense, and once again the minerality is very evident; a wine with plenty of body, velvety tannins and a slightly bitter aftertaste which will eventually become rounded off with a little more time in bottle. A good wine and a good companion for autumnal cuisine.
Cep mushroom carpaccio / lamb with fine herbs / rabbit / hard cheeses
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