2014 La Emperatriz Finca la Emperatriz Garnacha Cepas Viejas

Year: 2014
Appellation: Rioja
Country: Spain
Wine Advocate: 93
James Suckling: 95
Red Wine
Alcohol by Volume: 13.5%
Price :
$29.95

THIS IS GREAT BANG FOR YOUR BUCK!!

RIOJA ALTA FRUIT FROM:67-year-old bush vines with yields of 2,400 kg/ha (16.8 hl/ha).

"The wine that won my heart this time was without a doubt the 2014 Finca la Emperatriz Garnacha Cepas Viejas. This wine is sourced from the Rioja Alta subzone, not quite the classical Garnacha place, from the only old-vine Garnacha plot they have in the estate. It displays a captivating nose of sweet Garnacha fruit akin to cherries in liqueur, but keeping the freshness in a coolish vintage like 2014. The uncrushed grapes fermented in open-top stainless steel vats and 500-liter oak barrels with indigenous yeasts after five days of pre-fermentative maceration, and it matured in 500-liter oak barrels for ten months. The palate is medium-bodied with fine tannins, delicious fresh flavors and very good length, ending with a tasty, almost salty note. 8,966 bottles and a bunch of magnums were produced and filled in November 2014." (WA)

"An intensely herbal and floral nose displaying raspberries, cherries and hints of cloves. Mint, too. Medium body, ripe and juicy tannins and a very long, citrusy and savory finish. Made from vines over 65 years old. A wine that boasts superb finesse and style. Drink or hold." (JS)

REGULARLY $52, THIS $29.95 RIOJA GRENACHE BARGAIN IS NOT TO BE MISSED- “A must buy.”2014 FINCA LA EMPERATRIZ-GARNACHA CEPAS VIEJAS Estate Btld.-Rioja, Spain

I can think of no better way to begin this review of this wine I so adored, then by quoting the noted Spanish wine reviewer Luis Gutierrez, when he states (after attending a major tasting) that, “The wine that won my heart this time without doubt was the 2014 Finca la Emperatriz Garnacha Cepas Viejas.” And yes, it also won Martin Weiner’s heart (or at least his taste buds).

What strikes you first as unusual about this wine is that though it comes from the famous Rioja area of Spain, where the Tempranillo grape reins supreme, it is produced entirely from old vine Grenache (called Garnacha in Spain). Then if you are a Rhone fan, you may ask does the wine resemble a Chateauneuf-du-Pape (where the Grenache predominates) and in my opinion “only a bit,” but with a bit less tannin and with more cherry like fruit and less of the currant character of a Rhone wine).

This medium to full-bodied red with its herbal and roasted meat overtones results in a real winner -- that I certainly can enjoy now but that will still improve for several more years and keep well for a dozen or so more.

A wine that I certainly feel is worth its regular $52 price, but when on special at L.A. Wine Company for under $30, represents a bargain you don’t wane to miss, under any circumstance. Truly a “MUST” buy!!!

RATING: 95/96

PRICE: $29.95 A ***** (bargain)

WHERE: Los Angeles Wine Co.

(Martin's Guide to Wine Bargains) Winery Notes:
Tasting Notes:
Color:
Colour of strawberry jam of medium density with a hint of violet at the edges

Bouquet:
It is a remarkably perfumed wine, with a subtle complexity: raspberry, violets, white pepper, inconfusably varietal yet difficult to place.

Flavor:
On the palate it is fresh and of only medium weight yet nevertheless with great length and flavour. A wine which is longer than it is broad with a persistant aftertaste.