Friday, March 18, 2011

Tasting Notes: Dr. Goldilocks and the Six Tempranillos

Once upon a time, there was a stressed-out allied health professional with curly hair the color of old pennies, but shiny. We'll skip the debate as to whether it's blond or red, and we'll completely ignore the gray that's popping in – they're just really light blond, darnit! She had a long four-day week with lots of patients, emails from a marketing minion who wants everything NOW, and a very patient adminion who wouldn't let Dr. Goldilocks put off important tasks for too long. Oh, and contract work that makes for a nice change of pace, but which needed to be done before she left the next day to see Dr.-in-training Goldilocks 2.0 (aka Babysis) in Philadelphia.

So yes, she was stressed out, and when she finally left the office at 8:30, she was tired, hungry, and ready to have some wine. She wandered through the food aroma gauntlet of downtown Decatur (of which Atlanta is a suburb in case you're reading this, and you're Carl), but having given up red meat for Lent, Ted's wasn't an option, Ruby Tuesday was too chain restaurant, and Leon's was just too crowded. It was too early for the Decatur Diner, so she ended up at JavaMonkey, where she knew her friends would be gathered for the biweekly wine tasting, in this case Tempranillo.

Tempranillo, if you're wondering, is a Spanish varietal red, and the only people who can say the name right are from places like Peru. Seriously, it sounds like they're making love to it in their mouth. It's swoon-worthy. You may know it better as the primary grape in Rioja, which goes with fun words like Crianza.

For the sake of narrative, I'm going to mix up the tasting order. Just bear (no pun intended) with me.

Dr. Goldilocks tried the 2008 Protocolo Tempranillo (Vino de la Tierra de Castilla, Spain). Aged in American oak, she proclaimed, "This wine is too thin!" Indeed, it didn't have much to it outside the cedar-y finish.

Then she tried the 2009 Vega Sindoa Tempranillo (Navarra, Spain). This one she deemed as, "too earthy, and it's doing strange fruity things on the roof of my mouth!"

The 2008 Emilo Moro Finca Resalso (Ribera del Duero, Spain) had interesting caramel-cedar notes, and had a caramel/chocolate finish. "It's good, but still not what I'm looking for."

Enter the 2006 Raimat ViƱa 43 Tempranillo, which spends 18 months in Virginia oak. Because there's nothing like knowing *exactly* where your wood comes from. It has to be good if the founding fathers got drunk on it, right? This one was all cherry smoothness. "That's more like it!"

The 2006 Sierra Cantabria Crianza from Rioja, Spain (told you!) had a nice raspberry-cherry nose that Hubby said had a whiff of sunscreen. It went very well with the Bello Prosciutto sandwich. "This one's very good."

Finally the 2007 Venta Mazzaron Tempranillo (Tierra del Vino de Zamora, Spain) had a little hickory smoke to it, but was well-balanced with yummy fruit. It also has an interesting history in that it's mostly from un-grafted, pre-phylloxera vines.

"Ah," said Dr. Goldilocks, "this one is just right!"

Look for blog and Twitter updates this weekend from Pennsylvania wine country!


Joe said...

fun way with tasting notes. Keep 'em creative!

Cecilia Dominic said...

Thanks, Joe! I'm glad you enjoyed it. Sometimes you have to mix it up a little. :)