2006 La Rioja Alta "Viña Arana" Reserva Rioja

SKU #1201872 92 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The 2006 Viña Arana Reserva is a blend of Tempranillo with 5% Mazuelo (aka Cariñena) fermented with natural yeasts and had a slow malolactic fermentation of 56 days after which the wine was put in barrel in July 2007 where they matured for three years being racked every six months before they were bottled in December 2010. It feels like a ripe red, with notes of forest floor, dark cherries, spices and hints of leather, hung game, smoke and toasted notes. The palate is lush, and polished, with a velvety texture and moderate acidity. It is ready to be enjoyed now and able to stand the test of time. And all that at a very good price. 75,000 bottles produced. La Rioja Alta celebrates its 125th anniversary in 2015. Last year, I only tasted three wines from La Rioja Alta and I tasted six this time. The quality is as good as ever, with superb wines from the almost-perfect 2005 vintage coming into the market. Great Rioja, as traditional as it gets, in good quantity and moderate (and often plain great) prices. (LG)  (4/2015)

K&L Notes

La Rioja Alta produces some of our absolute favorites from one of our favorite regions: Rioja. Unlike the classy, distinguished Gran Reservas, or the brightly fruited, popular favorite Viña Ardanza, the Viña Arana is a worker's wine: this is the wine most often consumed by the all the cellar workers and most of the other staff at La Rioja Alta! A blend of Tempranillo and 5% Mazuelo, this shows its characteristic warm red fruits and dark cherries, offset by savory, earthy flavors as well. This vintage of the Arana is soft, approachable, and ribeye ready! (Joe Manekin, K&L Spanish & Portuguese wine buyer)

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Price: $27.99
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Varietal:

Tempranillo

- 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.
Country:

Spain

- 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.
Sub-Region:

Rioja

Alcohol Content (%): 13