This tasty treat from Rioja is exceptional value for what you get in the bottle, and would be perfect with BBQ meats. Made from Tempranillo, it's a fuller-bodied, lightly-oaked style that shows dark cherries and berries on the nose, along with sniffs of star anise spice and earthy savouriness. The palate is quite fruity, with fleshy cherries, cedar and soft spice in the flavours, a bit of firmness to the tannins, bright acidity, and a decent spicy finish. Cellar for a couple more years, or give it some air and enjoy tonight.
Established in 1964 by a group of local vine growers, the Bodegas y Vinedos Labastida cooperative has currently 152 members. All of them apply their experience and know-how to obtain the best quality wines from their 1,330 acres of own vineyards planted with vines which are over 25 years old. With such immense terrain, it is one of the largest wineries in the La Rioja to control their production from the vine to the bottle. Nestled between the Sierra Cantabria mountains and the river Ebro, the climatic conditions of the winery’s surroundings are unique in Rioja, offering their vine growers the best conditions for cultivating high-quality grapes.
Vintage 2015: The year was warm and rainfall was good until May, resulting in healthy and regular flowering. A dry summer concluded with harvest in September under excellent conditions allowing each vineyard to be harvested at the optimum phenolic ripeness. Healthy, low-yielding crops with great aromatic and colour intensity were delivered to the winery. The resulting wines affirm 2015 as one of the best recent vintages, alongside 2005 and 2010, marked by complex wines of dense, layered fruit and ripe, fleshy tannins.
Winemaking: The grapes were de-stemmed and crushed before undergoing a cold maceration at 6 degrees Celsius for 36 hours, prior to fermentation on skins at a constant 26 degrees Celsius. The wine was racked (by gravity flow) before undergoing a natural malo-lactic fermentation. The wine was aged in French and American oak barrels for 3 months. It was racked to concrete tanks to be decanted naturally prior to a light filtration before bottling.
Grape Variety: Tempranillo 100% (average vine age is 15-25 years old).
Colour: Bright and intense ruby.
Bouquet: The bouquet shows good aromatic intensity with blueberry fruit and a touch of grassy herbaceousness.
Palate: Flavours of red fruits, liquorice and a touch of fresh herbs follow through on a rounded and fleshy palate, to a persistent finish.
Service: Serve at around 14-15 degrees Celsius. A classic light, young drinking Rioja to accompany a wide range of Spanish tapas including semi-mature sheep’s mild cheese (manchego), Spanish cured ham (jamon); piquillo peppers stuffed with salt-cod; or stuffed peppers Rioja style. Enjoy this Rioja whilst it is fresh and vibrant – over the coming 2 years.