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2012 Coto de Imaz Rioja Gran Reserva

Removed from a subterranean wine cellar

Ends Sunday, 7pm Pacific

RATINGS

94Wine Enthusiast

...aromas of graphite, cherry, plum and oak are lightly toasted and spicy. On the palate, this offers chewy depth and impeccable balance. Ripe, heady plum, cassis and berry flavors are also nuanced and elegant, while this gran reserva from a ripe vintage tastes of vanilla and mild oak on the finish.

91Robert M. Parker Jr.

...focused and harmonious. Black cherry, tea, licorice, dried orange and spice notes mingle over firm, well-integrated tannins, while orange peel acidity keeps this lively. Expressive, in the traditional style.

91Vinous / IWC

Lively, spice-accented red berry and dried cherry aromas, along with suggestions of potpourri, coconut and woodsmoke. Smooth and expansive on the palate, offering bitter cherry and raspberry flavors that pick up a zesty mineral quality with air. Candied rose and mocha notes linger on a smoke-tinged finish that shows very good clarity and fine-grained tannins.

91James Suckling

Lots of vanilla, chocolate-coated blackberries, cedar, tobacco and glazed dark cherries. Medium to full body, succulent tannins and a fruit-driven but tangy finish.

16.5Jancis Robinson

Good freshness on the nose. Fully evolved with very little tannin evident but some wild gamey fruit of interest on the palate. A whole.

REGION

Spain, Rioja

Rioja Demoninación de Origine Calificada is Spain’s most important wine region. Located in northern Spain, it comprises 135,000 vineyard acres and was the first official appellation in Spain, earning its official DO status in 1926. In 1991 it became Spain’s first DOCa, Spain’s most prestigious appellation category. The DOCa is divided into three subzones: La Rioja Alavesa in the northeast; La Rioja Alta in the southwest; and La Rioja Baja in the east. About 75 percent of Rioja wines are reds, with Tempranillo the predominant grape. Garnacha (Grenache), Mazuelo (Carignan) and Graciano, a spicy, high-acidity red grape, are also allowed. White wines are made from Macabeo, Garnacha Blanca and Malvasia. Wines were made in this region well before the Romans arrived, though the Romans then the medieval monks refined vineyard management and wine production. In the 19th century French families migrated to Rioja after phylloxera wiped out their vineyards, and the French helped establish the tradition of wine blends, still part of Rioja winemaking. According to the rules for the appellation, a wine labelled a simple Rioja can spend less than a year in an oak aging barrel. A Criziana is aged for at least two years, one in oak. Rioja Reserva is aged at least three years, with at least one in oak. A Rioja Gran Reserva must be aged at least five years, with two years in oak.