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Lan 2005 Lan a Mano Edicion Limitada Rioja ($40) 90 Deep ruby with cherry and black currant fruit aromas with toasty notes. On the palate, the fruit is ripe and concentrated with notes of chocolate and minerals. The wine shows beautiful balance and structure, ripe tannins, yet is still a little young and in need of more bottle age. It is a close competitor of Culmen.

Lan 2004 Reserva Rioja ($17) 88 Dark ruby in color with aromas of black raspberry, ripe plum, coffee and herbs. Soft on the attack, it offers good mouth feel with flavors of black cherry and tea, medium acidity, hard tannins and firm grip on the finish.

Lan 2004 Culmen Reserva Rioja ($60) 92 Culmen is Lan’s top cuvée. It is estate bottled and only produced in the best years from old vines. Opaque ruby in color, it exhibits attractive aromas of black cherry and blackcurrant, toasted oak followed by a velvety smooth attack. On the palate it offers pure and dense ripe black fruit flavors with soft round mouth feel, outstanding structure, and some firm tannins on the finish. Impressive.

Las Orcas 2004 Pagos de Valdeorca Rioja ($40) 88 A lovely wine with a color of deep ruby and a touch of garnet. The palate reveals dark cherry and plum fruit, oak, and coconut. The tannins are round and chewy.

Las Orcas 2004 Solar de Randez Crianza Rioja ($17) 87 Medium ruby, garnet, nicely integrated red berry fruit and oak aromas, fresh concentrated soft sweet attack, moderate, medium-bodied, ripe and soft finish.

Las Orcas 2007 Solar de Randez Tempranillo Rioja ($12) 86 Medium purple ruby, strawberry, black cherry, whole cluster carbonic fermentation notes on nose, banana and wet straw. Fruity, clean, soft attack, simple, light and astringent. Importer: José Moura Selections New York, NY

H Bodegas Leza Garcia has been in the wine business

for generations, starting

winemakers.

Located

in

as growers and later becoming Rioja Alta, they produce classical

Rioja styled wines under Valdepalcios and Barón de Global Imports

their own Villacampa.

label and under Importer: Norstar

Bodegas Leza Garcia 2005 Familia Seleccionada Rioja ($21) 87 A blend of 90% Tempranillo and 10% Garnacha. Dark ruby. Spicy nose of plum and cherry. Medium weight. Toasty oak, plum and cherry flavors. Dry tannins. Importer: Norstar Global Imports

Bodegas Leza Garcia 2006 LG Rioja ($70) 88 The LG is this estate’s top of the line wine. Dark ruby in color, it offer a fresh, fruity nose of plum and cherry followed by a soft attack of medium weight cherry fruit and dry tannins on the finish. Importer: Norstar Global Imports Smithtown, NY

Bodegas Leza Garcia 2001 Baron de Villacampa Reserva Rioja ($25) 88 The 2001 Baron de Villacampa Reserva displays a dark ruby color with attractive aromas of ripe plum and oak. Aged for

20

12 months in French and American oak, it is classical in style, it offers a soft attack with nicely concentrated fruit flavors, good balance and round tannins on the finish.

H La Rioja Alta is one of Rioja’s finest wineries producing wines of excellent quality and classical in style. The winery celebrated 100 years of operation in 1990 and has steadily improved the quality of its wines. All the wines are delicious

and exemplary of the classical Rioja style.

Importer:

Europvin-Christopher Cannan Selections; Michael Skurnik Wines, (Syosset, NY); Bacchus Importers (Baltimore, MD) and others.

La Rioja Alta 1995 Gran Reserva 904 Rioja ($50) 92

A superb classical Rioja Gran Reserva.

Dark

garnet,

orange rim. Raisin and sherry like notes. Soft, round, ripe attack. Well integrated flavors. Dried cherry fruit with figs.

Lingering

intense

finish.

Well balanced.

Very complex.

Have with

braised

meats,

mushrooms, and

root vegetables.

La Rioja Alta 2005 Marques de Haro Reserva Rioja ($--) 93 Dark ruby opaque core, this 100% Tempranillo which spends 16 months in American oak, offers warm aromas of roasted coffee and blackberry. On the attack, it exhibits ripe and concentrated black cherry and other dark fruit flavors,

cinnamon

and

clove.

Beautifully

balanced with classic Rioja style, it is a wine which can be consumed now but will also be terrific in years to come.

La Rioja Alta 2001 Viña Alberdi Rioja ($22) 88 Deep ruby garnet. Green herbs, touch of vanilla, dried red cherries on the nose. Soft attack. Spice and herbal flavors, earthy, rustic tannins with some black cherry fruit. Round, ripe tannins.

La Rioja Alta 2000 Viña Ardanza Reserva Rioja ($28) 89

Medium ruby garnet.

Earthy, dried cherry, loamy.

Soft,

flavorful attack of red fruit with dominant secondary notes

  • leather, earth. Slightly tart mid-palate. Nice long finish of

sour cherry and vanilla and spice. Very traditional, well done.

H Bodegas Lar de Paula is a small family winery producing

well-made classical Rioja wines.

Located in Rioja Alavesa,

the winery sources all of its grapes from local growers. Their best wines are Cepas Viejas and Merus 4. They also produce table wines under the Herdade de Baroja label. Importer: American Estate Wines , NJ

Lar de Paula 2004 Cepas Viejas Rioja ($36) 88 This bottling is sourced from 40-50 years old vines from high altitude vineyards. It is ruby opaque in color with lovely dark cherry, tobacco, mint, and violet aromas.

Spending 14 months in new American and it reveals ripe black fruit layered with notes and 14.5% alcohol. Firm ripe tannins and a

French oak, of balsamic long finish.

Lar de Paula 2004 Merus 4 Rioja ($120) 90

This estate’s top wine.

rim.

100%

new

French

Dark

oak

for

ruby, opaque core, brick 12 months. 15-20 days of

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