2011 Finca El Encinal Crianza Ribera del Duero

SKU #1231689 92 points Wine Spectator

 Toasty oak, ripe fruit and vibrant acidity add up to a balanced, expressive red, with cherry and berry flavors that are bright and crunchy, while cocoa and mineral notes add depth. Lithe and lively. Drink now through 2021. Tasted twice, with consistent notes. 5,500 cases made.  (12/2015)

K&L Notes

Owned by the historic, traditionally minded Bodegas Franco Españolas in Rioja, Finca El Encinal is a similarly traditionally oriented Ribera del Duero. The winery's Tempranillo grapes (locally known as tinto fino) grow in heavily calcareous clay in an extremely continental climate, producing wines of intense power and fragrance that can stand up to some oak aging, in this case 15 months in American barrels as per Spain's historic preference for this type of oak. Dark fruited, spicy, nuanced and definitely capable of improving in bottle for at least another 7-8 years, this is a wonderful value in a Tempranillo based wine. (Joe Manekin, K&L Spanish wine buyer)

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By: Steve Bearden | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 6/2/2016 | Send Email
This amazing value is dark and crisp with a long, dry finish and wonderful clarity. Dried plum and black cherry fruit with touches of baking chocolate and cedar add complexity to this satisfying and food friendly bargain.

By: Scott Beckerley | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 5/26/2016 | Send Email
This wine was the true bargain of the day when we tasted it on May 24th. It has an bright, red fruit nose with hints of earth and tannin but, not too much. On the palate, darker fruits, with spices and dark chocolate. A lingering, delicious finish. Drinkable now but, should age wonderfully for the next several years. What more could you ask for in a $15.00 wine?!
Top Value!

By: Gary Norton | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 5/25/2016 | Send Email
This is a hearty wine that will surely stand the test of time. It has an earthy, spice-driven nose that is reminiscent of some pricier Ribera's on the market right now. The palate shoes youthful black fruit notes and a splash of savory herbs and mocha on the back end. A few hours in a decanter wont' hurt this wine if you plan on drinking it sooner than later. Great wine at a very low price point.
Drink from 2019 to 2029

By: Gary Westby | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 5/25/2016 | Send Email
This Ribera Del Duero has a lot of stuffing- especially for such a fair price. If you like a big, dark, powerful wine with plenty of grip and richness that still finishes dry, you will like the Finca El Encinal Crianza. This wine has enough acidity to keep it lively and make it go well with food.

By: Joe Manekin | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 4/13/2016 | Send Email
I'm stoked to have this wine back in. The 2010 bottling was one of our best selling Spanish wines a few years ago, and the 2011 picks up where that wine left off. Dark fruits showcase the Ribera del Duero region's serious tannin structure and complexity, but combine also with a dry, savory balance and a deft touch with both the modest level of extraction and oak, particularly given their competition in this region of big, spicy, full-bodied, oaky wines. Finca el Encinal Crianza - dang, that's delicious!

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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:

Ribera del Duero

Alcohol Content (%): 14