1996 Bodegas Las Orcas Solar de Randez Reserva Rioja

SKU #1058127

Every now and then, we come across a perfectly aged gem of a wine, showing optimally and without any need for additional cellar time.  In this case, the wine comes direct from the cool, dimly lit cellars of Bodegas Las Orcas, just outside of the medieval walled village of Laguardia.  Rioja continues to be one of the most underrated wine regions for elegant, ageworthy, value priced wines which consistently deliver lots of pleasure at the table.  Classically styled and from one of Rioja’s best vintages of the 1990’s, this wine shows all the nuances of flavor and elegance one could hope for in a mature medium-bodied red wine.  Aromas are reminiscent of a bowl full of Rainier cherries, with a hint of cocoa powder and sweet tobacco.  On the palate, as mentioned earlier this is definitely drinking perfectly now.  The development is classic, with the red fruit going towards the dried fruit side of things.  There is more cocoa and a wonderful umami here.  These are the unique and rewarding flavors that one can only perceive in a well aged red wine.  Bodegas Las Orcas is a family winery, with a bodega  just outside the town wall of Laguardia and vineyards located nearby in the Rioja Alavesa. In the heavily clay/calcareous soil, tempranillo thrives, and forms the basis of this wine.  This is a perfect bottle to drink now, as well as to show you what you have to look forward to when you age your Rioja!  Highly recommended.

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Price: $29.99
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- A very important red grape varietal that's native to Northern Spain, grown across the north and central regions of the country. Low in acid and alcohol, with subtle strawberry, leather and tobacco notes, the grape responds well to oak aging and plays particularly well with others. Tempranillo is an important component, when combined with Garnacha, Mazuelo, Viura and Graciano, of Rioja, with the best examples coming for the cooler, higher-elevation regions like Rioja Alta and Rioja Alavesa. It is also grown in significant quantities in the Ribera del Duero where it is called Tinto Fino and Penèdes where it is called Ull de Llebre o Ojo de Llebre. Tempranillo hasn't gained a particularly strong foothold outside of Spain, achieving some success under the name Tinto Roriz in Portugal. There it is used as a component of Port and in the table wines of the Ribera del Duero and the Dão.


- With more land under vine than any other country in the world, Spain is the great sleeping wine giant. In recent years, a great deal of money and passion has been poured in the burgeoning Spanish wine industry, helping to improve quality among its vast array of wines from sparkling Cava to Sherry to Rioja Gran Reserva. The most important red-wine-producing regions are Rioja, Ribera del Duero and Navarra in the north and Priorat and Penedes in the northeast.