2008 Roda I Reserva Rioja
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Released later than many others, the 2008 Roda I Reserva is a truly Atlantic, classical Rioja, with developed aromas of leather, blackberries and spicy and toasted sesame seed notes. The weaker vintages show the effect of the oak more evidently, but it is absorbed over time, much as I saw with the 1997–a somewhat similar vintage. This Atlantic has fresh notes than might feel a little herbal when young that turn into dry roses with a good decade in bottle. I see some earthy hints (peat), a combination of red and black fruit and that spiciness coming back in the palate. The wine is a bit stiff, as these kinds of vintages often take longer to come into their own. It has good depth, very fine tannins and is very fresh. Santolaya also uncorked a bottle of the 1994, a superb wine, aging in the direction of the classical Riojas and should still live a long life, and still feels young at age 21. This will surely live a long life in bottle and it’s one to have with food. Is it possible that cooler vintages age more in a Burgundian way and the warmer/riper vintages go more Bordeaux? 85,304 bottle of this pure Tempranillo were produced in 2008.
Located in the famed barrio de estaciones, Roda is the relative newcomer in this historic area of bodegas including Lopez de Heredia, La Rioja Alta and Muga. Their style tends to show more dark fruit flavors, with savory undertones and the grilled, toasty nuances of high quality French oak barrels. A rich, lushly fruited, spicy Rioja, the 2008 Roda I is marked by baking spices, dried coconut and other barrel notes, along with an undeniably powerful Rioja Alta profile. Chewy, savory and a really impressive moutfhul of Rioja, this is for fans of Napa Cab and right bank Bordeaux. (Joe Manekin, K&L Spanish wine buyer)