2002 Bodegas Olarra Cerro Añon Gran Reserva, DOCa Rioja
I don't follow my own advice. All this talk about global drinking is useless because I always end up going back to true wines, not good tasting wines. I could devote pages and pages to what I feel is true wine, but simply put, they're wines that are authentic to place and time of origin, history and tradition. And you just cannot find these wines in the New World. Not yet at least.
2002 was an odd vintage in Rioja. Difficult weather, uneven ripening particularly for tempranillo - to make a gran reserva in 2002 was a confident move. This wine proved my skepticism wrong. Dark in colour, elegant, with minerals and floral notes. Has those soft, very textural tannins, finishing long. Excellent integration, and drinking very well.
What was I saying about global drinking? Right. Until New World vineyards have 50 or so vintages on the shelf, nothing comes close to the personality European wines have. As a partisan of Niagara wines, I hope, in my old age, to see their character blossom. Until then . . .