1999 Luna Beberide Tinto

Price: $19.99 @ K&L Wines imported by Grapes of Spain

What They Said:

1999 Luna Beberide Tinto VdT Castilla y LeonPer K&L Wines “This is an incredibly rare, fully mature, Spanish gem. Produced from the steep, slate, terraced vineyards of Bierzo by Spain’s legendary Mariano Garcia (while he was still making wine at Vega Sicilia!), here is a beautiful example of a perfectly aged Spanish wine that has developed quite beautifully in bottle. Produced from 40% Cabernet, 30% Merlot and 30% Mencia, think of it as a supple, balanced, old school styled Bordeaux blend with a Castillian twist. Savory cherry, hints of sage leaf, green and black peppercorn and an unmistakable character of mature Cabernet family aromas (many people liken Mencia to Cabernet Franc, which completes this Graves style blend) make for one gorgeous bottle of wine. And Mariano Garcia made it at the same time he was busy working on Vega Sicilia “Unico,” which is a good few hundred dollars more. For fans of good, honest affordable bordeaux and old school California Cabs, this K&L exclusive could be right up your alley.”

What I Think:

Given I have a case of the ’05 in the cellar I had to take the opportunity to see how this one might age. This bottling, an interesting blend of 40% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot and 30% Mencia, is the Spanish version of Bordeaux and seems it may be worthy of a name of its own (e.g Super Tuscan). Perhaps we should let the wine decide…

On the nose it shows gorgeous dark fruit and herbs. The palate shows dry cherries and black olives (with a hint of rhubarb) that frame themselves with a dry, cedar backbone. The finish shows this wines age with perfectly integrated tannins and spices that last and last. For those sensitive this wine may be overly dry but I still find it to be smooth, silky, and elegant. If you missed the chance to try the ’99 K&L Wines just sent me an email to let me know the 2000 (which they described as “more muscular, ageworthy, and a bit more impressive” is now in stock. I already added a bottle to my cart, hope it can deliver on their promise!

Thanks to Viva La Wino for tipping me off to this one! You can find his thoughts here.

Rating: Wow!

1999 Whitethorn Alder Springs Vineyard

Price: ??? not sure as it was a gift.

What They Said:

Closest I could find here was on the wine list at Acquerello for $60.

What I Think:

We got this for out wedding back in October of 2003. We had the wine with turkey meat loaf with mashed yams and green beans. The blend is 56% Cabernet and 44% Merlot. I have tried many blends but this is one that I have never enjoyed all that much.  I am guessing if you like this style that this would be a bottle for you. On the nose, the blend works well. Some dark fruit without much tannin but it seems as soon as these two hit the tongue they begin doing battle. Which ones going to win? Not sure but the experience leaves something to be desired for me.

On a side note I think they only made this bottling for a single year as it was difficult to find any information on it. This winery seems to be renowned for their Pinot’s.

Rating: Not for Me