Friday, November 22, 2013

Finca Los Trenzones 1998 Condesa de Laganza Reserva (Spain)

I keep my wine inventory on-line through a program called CellarTracker I know many who do - it really is a great way to keep track of your wine collection, no matter what the size.  But I'm not here to plug CellarTracker - what I do want to say is I looked up the community wine notes of this wine before I pulled it out of the cellar and no one had anything nice to say about this wine: poor marks and words like "thin" ('08), "spoiled" ('09) and "fading" ('07) peppered the reviews ... it was cringe inducing, especially because the worst of the notes were written in 2009 ... I was four years later.

I ended up taking this wine into a wine class I teach for those with a more sophisticated palate ... I told them it was a single grape varietal - some thought it old, but no one thought it 15 years old (2006 was the closest guess) ... though someone did nail the country and grape variety: 100% Tempranillo from Spain (Rioja) - though the wine is from La Mancha.  The rest of the vinification goes something like this: 12 months in oak barrels and 24 months of bottle age before release.  Aromas started out earthy and musty (typical for a wine in bottle this long) with a pruny vegetal note that sooner rather than later began to reveal dried strawberry compote.  And while the palate was earthy there were other aspects to it that were interesting, if you were willing to give it a chance: dried sour cherry with a hint of fig; the acidity was also up to par along with a core that showed lots of woodsy notes.  My final note on the wine read:  "This wine will not set the world on fire, but it is quite drinkable the longer it sits in glass the better it gets" (I only had it in glass about an hour before I drank the rest) ... I would definitely not want to hold this wine any longer cause it ain't getting any better. but it sure was a great experiment that paid off handsomely.

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