2011 Bodegas Casa Juan Señor de Lesmos "Cuarteto" Rioja

SKU #1112153

There is a wonderful element of whimsy and joy at this tiny, family bodega located in Laguardia. The elephant logo, the onsite African art museum, as well as the name (there is no Señor de Lesmos, as it turns out) all speak to the family's joie de vivre and sense of humor. There is nothing funny about the quality of these wines, though. All estate fruit, hand harvested and carefully vinified with native yeasts, this is a hand-sewn wine with the purity, texture and elegance to prove it. Cuarteto is a classic, Alavesa style "maceración carbonica" wine where the whole clusters of grapes are thrown into vats and the CO2 enables an intracellular fermentation. The difference between this wine and its peers (as well as many Beaujolais) is that the fermentation is entirely achieved with native yeasts and the aging occurs in concrete vats. As a result this wine has a fresh and subtly jammy nose, with hints of dried herbs, and a peppery, spicy, cherry fruited palate, with surprising structure. I have yet to taste an unoaked Rioja that even approaches the Cuarteto in quality; the wine is a joy to drink and represents real value. (Joe Manekin, K&L Spanish wine buyer)

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Price: $9.99
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Staff Image By: Jim Barr | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 12/4/2012 | Send Email
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And yet another wonderful wine from this estate. Absolutely delicious! Opulent aromas of mocha, plums, anise, cassis, unlit cigar, and blackberry characteristics abound in the nose . Broad, rich, viscous, creamy, complex, great mid-range, integrated, fleshy, and long. Rusty has also designated this Gem as one of our house reds for however long it is available 13.0% ABV
Drink from 2011 to 2020

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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.


Alcohol Content (%): 13