This week presented far too many great wines to select just one. I attended dinner at a friend’s elegant Georgian-styled home. It was an intimate setting; just three of us. We’ve known each other for decades and yet the topics of conversation remain endless. Over a six-hour stretch, with four wines in tow, it took a friend gasping at their watch to realize we were well past midnight on a work-day evening. No one wanted to leave; that’s when you know it was a good evening! As usual, we started planning for the next gathering as we walked out the door. Great memories, great conversation, and equally great wine. These are the moments we live for.
Unfortunately, I forgot to capture an image of the first wine but it was a Cuvée Rosé from Laurent-Perrier that we sipped in the library before heading to the dinner table. The other wines are captured below. The surprise of the evening was the 1996 Alenza from Bodegas Condado de Haza. My friend had a case in his cellar and this was the first time tasting for any of us. It had a stubborn cork but we managed to set it free. Full bodied with a long finish and firm tannins. Showing black and red fruits with earth notes, spices, dark chocolate, and peppercorn. Great age and definitely in its prime. Enjoy!
Winery Notes: This vintage is a true celebration of the senses. The composition is rich and complex, with aromatic notes of wild flowers. The body leaves nothing to be desired, revealing a firm structure with tasty, almost mellow tannins and remarkable density. Blend: 54% Cabernet Sauvignon, 34% Merlot, 12% Cabernet Franc
Winery Notes: Intense ruby red color. Notes of ripe, red fruit and jam give way to spice, vanilla and licorice. Well-managed tannins and balanced acidity provide suppleness and lead to a long, lingering finish.
Winery Notes: Selected late-harvest bunches from one of the greatest vintages in living memory, the stalks and stems left in the fermenting must to enhance the structure of this powerfully full-bodied yet elegant wine. Pure, concentrated crushed berries on the nose totally overwhelm the 27 months spent in French and American oak. Alenza is the culmination of Alejandro’s winemaking style, a modern interpretation of the densely tannic style of his first wines produced in Pesquera in the mid-1970s (named for Alejandro and his wife, Esperanza).
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