The most renowned region for wine in Spain is Rioja DOCa. Known for its quality red wines the main grape produced in this region is Tempranillo. As it happens International Tempranillo Day is taking place this week. To tie in with this I have tried a 2012 Rondan Crianza from Wines Direct.
The Winemaker & The Grape
The winemaker is Manuel Tato. His vineyard is Rondan and it is known for producing quality wines at accessible prices. The grapes are hand harvested and there is an emphasis on keeping the fruit in the wine as fresh as possible. Typically Tempranillo gives a medium to full-bodied wine with medium acidity. The Rondan wine is 90% Tempranillo and 10% Garnacha.
When poured the wine is a deep ruby colour. Intensity wise it will fill your nose but not overpower it. The nose has a rich aroma of fruit; blackberry, cherry and plum. As is usual with reds it is of course dry. The acidity is medium, which simply means it will make your mouth water but allow you time to savour the flavours beforehand.
There is a weight in the mouth to the Rondan Crianza giving it a medium to full body. It fills the mouth but has a smoothness to it. There are layers of taste to it making it beautifully complex or put more simply, there is a lot going on with it. First the ripe fruit like blackberry and plum. Then the spice and subtle vanilla notes from being aged in oak. It has a long and appealing finish to round off the experience.
The Verdict & Suggested Food Pairing
The Rondan Crianza is a very good quality wine. Its balanced and enjoyable and will work on its own or with food. If you are pairing with food then you won’t go wrong with lamb. All the lamb you can think of. Roast lamb, lamb cutlets or tender slow cooked lamb shank (if you do love lamb shank, The Vintage Kitchen has the best). Paella and Moroccan inspired tagines will also work well, as will tapas with chorizo and Jamon.
Where To Get It
You can pick up a bottle in the Arnotts branch of Wines Direct for between €14.50-15.50. If you do decide to pop in and pick up a bottle they have just opened a wine bar on site. You can choose from up 18 different wines by the glass starting at €4.50. If you are taking a longer break from shopping you can choose a bottle to enjoy for a small corkage fee.
**This is not a sponsored post. The bottle of wine was however complimentary. I chose to share my thoughts on it. I’m currently studying WSET Level 2 Wines and Spirits and have signed up to the Wines Direct Wine Explorers Club (monthly paid subscription) to broaden and improve my knowledge of wine – and I’m loving it**