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2008 Bodega Inurrieta Sur

Blackberries and brambles show in the nose, with a vanilla background from American oak. The palate is dark and deep, with earthy mulberry backed by black cherry. Mild black pepper and tobacco leaf show on the mid-palate, lingering over a mid-length finish with the mulberry. The depth and complexity of the wine belie the moderate price. Drink with flank steak or ropa vieja. Highly Recommended. DH
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2005 Bodegas Valduero Reserva

That lovely cigar box and cedar nose so typical of many Spanish reds is immediately forthcoming on the nose, along with some herbal elements. Black cherry fruit is forward, and the wine is a bit clumsy in that regard. Tannins are still sharp, giving a somewhat dusty finish, but still quite pleasant overall. At least one hour of aeration is recommended. Still could use some additional age. Good with just about any grilled meat on the barbecue, especially if using wood to smoke. Recommended. GT
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2006 Bodega Martin Berdugo MB

A very expressive and complex Ribera del Duero wine, and the winery is not shy about it. The “MB” stands for “Muy Bueno” – “very good.” Spends 2 years in oak and another 2 in bottle before release. Chocolate, cigar box, and pepper on the nose carry through on the palate, opening onto rich notes of spice (allspice) and clean fruit (boysenberry). Lingers well on finish. If you’re a tempranillo fan (and I am) you’ll really enjoy this one. It’s the kind of wine I like with just about any grilled meat – will even stand up to the smoke of realTexas BBQ brisket. Highly recommended. GT
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2008 Naveran Dama Cava

A champagne-style sparkling wine, made in the traditional method in the Cava region of Spain. When first poured, amidst some caramel-toffee there’s a faint pear note in the aroma. Pear flavors deepen on the palate while the wine is very cold, with a mild, round, fruitiness. There’s little apparent acidity until the wine begins to warm in the glass, then its lemon-wrapped tartness comes through on the palate and in the finish. Recommended. BSE
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2007 Bodegas San Alejandro Garnacha Calatayud Las Rocas

Very bright red fruits, straightforward, not incredibly complex, but well-balanced. High acid and good minerality make a very food-friendly wine. Cherries and cranberries are the lead fruits with some raspberry showing on the mid-palate along with a very light herbal touch. This is a red wine for chicken, but stick with the dark meat. Recommended. DH