2004 La Rioja Alta "Viña Arana" Reserva Rioja
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The 2004 Vina Arana Reserva, a blend of 95% Tempranillo and 5% Mazuelo that is aged in oak for 36 months, has a well-defined vibrant chocolate-tinged bouquet with touches of saddle-leather, cinnamon and ox-blood that unfurl beautifully in the glass. The palate is very well-balanced with a caressing, sensual texture and subtle leather and peppermint notes on the finish. This is a wonderful Rioja that momentarily transports you to the vineyard. Drink 2014-2025+.
Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar
Dark red. Deeply pitched cherry and blackcurrant aromas are complemented by smoked meat, licorice and a hint of leather. Chewy, palate-staining dark fruit flavors are slow to unfold, eventually showing a sweet floral pastille quality and a hint of bitter cherry pit. Finishes with solid tannic grip and a lingering note of candied rose. Give this some time. 90(+?)
This is a tough to find bottling from La Rioja Alta. It consists of more Tempranillo than Ardanza, and it is a bit more tensely structured. Still wonderfully classic, though, with lovely berry fruit, some subtle toasty/earthy notes and a bit of a more serious personality than the delicious, extroverted 2001 Ardanza Reserva Especial also in our stock. This wine will surely age well for another decade or more. Arana, it is worth noting, is also a favorite among many of the crew over at La Rioja Alta.