SAG (Blind) Tasting (Chez Weber - Chicago IL): Tasted double blind. An odd bottle. Very reductive to start, i had lots of trouble getting past the sulfur even though the bottle was open an hour+, then in glass perhaps another 30 minutes. Seemed ripe and powerful and not distinctly Rioja, which is very different than I remember this wine from previous times tasted.
Yeah! This is a great bottle, it makes me want to only drink aged European wines. The subtle yet complex funky notes were fabulous along with cherry, plum, and spice flavors. There was a sweet note that was captivating. It was sweet but not sugary sweet, more fruit sugars, dates perhaps.
On the nose it was fairly unanimously commented upon that it could best be described as "muted", with several comments related to the aged-smell.. Raspberries and slight vanilla with a hint of creme brulee.
Again, the palate was universally described as quite drying, yet smooth. Restrained, not fruity, well aged, a full mouth feel, with some strawberries but at the same time a fairly watery finish.
I was personally quite disappointed when this was revealed, as I'd been looking forward with much anticipation to tasting this wine. Good, but certainly not great.
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(C.V.N.E. (Compañía Vinícola del Norte de España) Rioja Imperial Gran Reserva) Bricking dark ruby color; appealing, lifted, cedar, dried cherry, floral, black raspberry nose; tasty, rich, youthful, cherry, tart black raspberry palate with firm, sweet tannins; should go 40 years; long finish
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