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2015 Bodegas Muga "Selección Especial" Reserva Rioja

SKU #1475986 96 points James Suckling

Outer quote mark The balance and purity to this wine is really impressive with blackberries, black truffles and dark fruit. Wet earth. Full body. Tight and compact. Structured, long and powerful. Superb length. Compressed and polished texture. Drink in 2022. Inner quote mark (7/2019)

95 points Jeb Dunnuck

Outer quote mark The 2015 Selección Especial checks in as 70% Tempranillo and the balance Garnacha, Mazuelo, and Graciano that's an old vine and terroir selection. Aged 6 months in new oak followed by 24 months in 90% French oak and 10% American oak, it has a beautiful bouquet of blueberries, black raspberries, crushed violets, incense, and cedar. This gives way to a full-bodied, rich, powerful wine that has an incredible sense of elegance and finesse on the palate. It's a brilliant Rioja that can be drunk today or cellared for 10-15 years or more Inner quote mark (9/2019)

94 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

Outer quote mark The very perfumed, expressive and floral 2015 Selección Especial is a lot fresher than the stereotype of the vintage I had before I tasted 2015 widely. It's a year that has turned out fresher than what the weather during the growing season pointed at. It was a dry and warm year, but the wines have very good freshness, which in this case feels exceptional. My first surprise was how aromatic and open the wine is for such a young age, with aromas of lavender and other Mediterranean herbs jumping from the glass. I expected that from the 2016s, but I thought the 2015 was going to be more closed and reticent. The palate is medium to full-bodied with fine-grained tannins, balanced, fresh and very clean. This combines energy and elegance with classical Rioja character. (LG) Inner quote mark (6/2019)

93 points Wine Spectator

Outer quote mark Velvety yet vivacious, this red has a lovely texture. Expressive flavors of maraschino cherry, red currant, orange peel, clove and vanilla are supported by round tannins and citrusy acidity. Fresh and focused, in the traditional style. (TM) Inner quote mark (5/2020)

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Price: $39.99

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By: Kirk Walker | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 5/12/2020 | Send Email
This is an impressive wine. It is to be expected, Muga makes great wines. The 2015 Seleccion Especial definitely lives up to its Especial title. This is Rioja, unmistakably, but the accent has a strong French influence that softens the traditional Castillian. This is Rioja that framed with French oak. It helps soften and well and intensify Tempranillo. That is a round about way of saying, this is Rioja for anyone who love Cabernet. This is a dark, rich, concentrated wine. It is also aromatic, expressive, complex and wonderfully balanced. The fruit is about the beautiful dark berries and fruits that Tempranillo and Graciano bring to the party. There are sizable tannins but the oak polishes them and keeps them in check. Behind the fruit there are faint herbs, spice and a dusty mineral thing. Most importantly, now that we are at the end, this wine sings! It vibrates on the palate and just goes and goes and goes. This great tonight, it will need some time to open up but it will age nicely for a long time.

By: Chris DePaoli | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 5/11/2020 | Send Email
A lot has changed since I last wrote a wine review, but thankfully upon coming back it seem Muga is still fire and The "Especial" bottling is still delicious enough to earn that designation. With about an hour of air this wine, while young, was fresh and flavorful and powerful, with the classic dusty garrigue and blackberry/blueberry crushed notes that often mark great Rioja. Open now or age, just make sure to drink.

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