WSDC Event - Mainly Rioja 2001 tasting

What: Mainly Rioja 2001 tasting Event Sold Out  
When: 29 Jan 13 ,18:30 -20:30
Where: Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining SW1Y 5DB map
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This is a wonderful chance to taste outstanding wines.

2001 was a ‘splendid, magnificent, and perfect’ vintage for Rioja wines, and tonight we will be tasting them. In addition, we have been offered some older vintages, even a very rare Rioja from the amazing vintage of 1970. Rioja takes up a large part of north-east Spain, and has a long history of wine-making. We are interested in trying Reserva wines, which spend one year in barrel and two in bottle, often the finest wines, and Gran Reservas, made in the best vintages, with two years in barrel and another three in the bottle, before becoming available. Then they have a long cellar time ahead!

We will start the evening with the Society’s Reserva Cava which has been aged for two and half years. The Times described it as the ‘Christmas 2012 best-buy bubbly’. Hopefully better than most Cavas that I have tried. With a lot more weight, we shall have a fino/amontillado sherry to taste, Romate Fino Perdido, which has been very well reviewed by the press and WS members. Eight years old, savoury and elegant, fresh and crisp.

Moving to Rioja, Contino Blanco 2006, using malvasia, garnacha blanca and viura grapes, we can expect a nutty honeyed taste. To compare, we have an ancient white Rioja, Vina Tondonia Reserva Blanco 1996, by Lopez de Heredia, which has a lasting aroma of smoky caramel, dry and lean to taste. I look forward to your opinions!

Now to the main subject. The following wines are from the wonderful 2001 vintage, and some will say that we are drinking these wines in their infancy.

The Society’s Exhibition Rioja Gran Reserva 2001 is a one-off with CVNE, described as smooth, silky and intense. CVNE (North Spain Viticulture Co) has Imperial Gran Reserva 2001 which is made from 20 year old vines. This is a stylish wine, with lovely fruit, some liquorice and a meaty richness. It should be very interesting to compare to the previous Exhibition wine. Also from CVNE we have Contino Reserva 2001, from a single 66 hectare vineyard, created in 1973 to reflect the way wines are made in Bordeaux. Then we have Viña Amézola Gran Reserva 2001 which has spicy fruit and vanilla undertones - Typically tempranillo you might observe. La Rioja Alta, Viña Ardanza Reserva Especial 2001 is complex, fragrant, and smooth, with berry notes and, like the others, very young.

We now look at the wines of Marqués de Murrieta; first Castillo Ygay Gran Reserva 2001, made only in the best years, and aged for many years in barrel. It has decades ahead of it. Professional tasters find no end of aromas, leather, cherries, tobacco etc good structure and acidic fruit.

Going back in time, we have a double magnum (one of 2,250 bottled) of Marqués de Murrieta Reserva 1994, a very good year, which is mature, fresh and lively. In addition, we have another double magnum, the 1991 Reserva Especial (1 of 1,130) which has increasing complexity, lots of fruit on the nose and palate.

Then to close we have a chance to try Castillo Ygay Gran Reserva Especial 1970, (Marqués de Murrieta), described by some as the greatest vintage of the 20th century in Rioja, and of which I have read an ‘outstanding’ tasting note. Complex aromas, lovely finesse and structure on the palate, clean and spicy with a long finish.

Dress Code: Smart casual

Guests: £38
Members: £35

Dates for the Diary:
Wednesday 27 Februay: Chateau Haut-Bailly dinner at the RAC with Derek Smedley MW
Tuesday 19 March: Pinot Noir tasting at 1 Carlton House Terrace

Booking Form

Vintages available from The Wine Society:
Contino Reserva, Rioja, 2007
Marqués de Murrieta Reserva, Rioja, 2005