Browse Tag

castilla and león

Lovamor or less

Maestro Tejero 2010 “Lovamor” Albillo (Castilla & León) – I don’t love this. I don’t really actually like it or dislike it much, in fact. It just kind of sits there, narrow and a bit blobby, some sort of pale white fruit knobbed with a flaky aromatic that reminds me of too-old coconut. A proto-orange (more like pale flesh) wine it’s supposed to be, but the textural enhancement is minimal at best. It’s extremely brief, as well. I’ve had José Pastor-imported wines that I haven’t liked before, but I’ve never had one that bored me. All this said, my description doesn’t match anyone else’s that I could find, and I wonder if this bottle was intact. (12/11)

Can you take me Shaya?

Shaya 2009 Rueda Verdejo (Castilla & León) – Boisterous yellow-green fruit, a little like fermented Mello Yello™ without the sugar – or at least without too much of it – but the cavorting can’t, in the end, hide the fact that this wine doesn’t have much to say once the Tiggerish bouncing has abated. (6/11)

Julia Mancuso

Martúe 2006 Vino de la Tierra de Castilla (Castilla & León) – Haphazard red fruit, sun-warmed and reasonably acidic. Neither knit nor multisyllabic, but pleasant enough. It says it’s a country wine and it tastes like a country wine. Truth in advertising! (1/10)


[bottle]Pagos de Quintana 1999 Ribera del Duero (Castilla & León) – Restrained fruit, herbs, earthen mushrooms, and dried black pepper powder. Well-oaked, for sure, but pleasant to drink, even if it’s not really all that interesting. Drink it in haste, however; an hour or so of air turns the wine to raw oak, dill, and scratchy nastiness, and after a few glasses we end up pouring the rest down the drain. (10/06)

Bajoz the dwarf

[bottle]Bajoz 2004 Tinta de Toro “Joven” (Castilla & León) – There’s little reason to think this is still drinking well, but for $3.99 (on closeout) the cost of failure is pretty low. And indeed, the first half-hour or so of this wine’s uncorked life is a mess of embittered dark red fruit and scraping tannin of the sort common to drink-now wines taken well past their expiration dates. But then, surprisingly, the tannin smoothes a bit, and the fruit hefts up to something a little darker and a lot rounder, and suddenly the wine’s fully mature and drinking beautifully. Who’d have guessed? (3/09)

Today or to Mauro

Mauro 1998 Vino de Mesa de Castilla y León (Castilla & León) – Lavishly (and, based on the taste of it, expensively) wooded, but that element has matured nicely into its old-furniture, spicebox stage. However, the fruit dries out rather sooner after opening than I’d like. In the early stages, it’s plummy, texturally lovely, and maturing. Later, it kinda disappears into its wood. I’m not sure if this is just a transitionary stage or the wine’s coda, but I’d be inclined towards the latter interpretation. For a short while after opening, however, it’s quite nice. (12/08)

Isn’t it Sardonic?

Abadia Retuerta 1996 Sardon de Duero “Cuvée El Palomar” (Castilla & León) – This wine, served blind, has me completely fooled into thinking it’s some sort of lush, middle-aged Loire cabernet franc that had seen a little wood. Boy, was that wrong. It’s tempranillo and cabernet sauvignon, and while there are some soft barrel aromatics that emerge when the wine is still, what’s most present is a grassy, bell peppery earth, fine acidity, very slightly underripe tannin, and a medium-length finish with an odd lactic turn. There are definitely some appealing qualities here. Based on its structure, however, I’d drink it over the next few years; I think the wine will turn increasingly green and tart with much more aging. (12/07)