2008 Miguel Merino "Viñas Jovenes" Crianza Rioja

SKU #1071080

We are very pleased to be focusing our Spanish direct import program in Rioja, and most fortunate to have begun working with one of Rioja's most beloved vignerons, Miguel Merino. A longtime participant in the wine business, having sold wine for wine distributors in the States as well as working as an export manager, Miguel has found success every step of the way, and then decided that rather than retire, he wanted to fulfill his dream of owning vines and making wine. Based in the Rioja Alta town of Briones, Miguel Merino makes, as he likes to put it, an "updated classic" style of Rioja, all from his own 2 hectares of vines and several hectares of vineyards owned by a close friend. All the fruit is from sloped vineyards (Miguel is a fan of his slopes) within the cooler climate Rioja Alta town of Briones, which makes these wine a terrific showcase of the terroir (especially in a region where wines blended from various villages are more often the norm). Sourced from comparably younger vines (viñas jovenes in Spanish), this is still a characterful wine (no surprise, as the vines actually are approaching 15 years old and are not far from their prime production period). A beautiful, translucent ruby color, there are deep, dark cherry aromas leading to a very concentrated, pure, intense, cherry fruited palate. Give this wine some air, and do not be afraid to finish it up on the second or even third day; it will only taste better!

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Price: $19.99
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Staff Image By: Scott Beckerley | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 1/13/2012 | Send Email
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This is a clean, traditional wine in the mold of the wines from Muga. Traditional but, with the twist of being accessible and not too earthy. Deep, dark cherry fruit with hints of spice and tobacco on the nose. The palate is dominated by bright cherry fruit with hints of raspberries and white pepper. Tastes great even after being open for a day or two!

Staff Image By: Kyle Kurani | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 11/29/2011 | Send Email
Each offering that I have tried from Miguel Merino has been very stylistically correct, and extremely well crafted, this wine is no exception. This wine offeres a nuanced balance of fruit, oak, and spice. His Crianza strikes a balance between new and old world approaches in Rioja and does so seemlessly.

Staff Image By: Jeff Garneau | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 10/25/2011 | Send Email
I was tremendously excited when Joe Manekin, who buys our Spanish wines, announced the arrival of some of our newest direct imports - the wines of Miguel Merino. Senor Merino's wines are made with enormous respect for tradition and a modern sensibility. His 2008 Miguel Merino "Viñas Jovenes" Crianza Rioja is a dexterous amalgam of fruit and oak, with spice and coconut, tart berry, and rich plum notes. Delicious from the first sip, the wine nevertheless put on additional weight and richness of texture with a bit of air. Decant for best results.

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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.