As Spanish Wine weeks extends into it's 6th day I'm taking a look at another wine from Bodega y Viñedo Fuentecén. As with Thursday's wine this one is also from Ribera del Duero. The average age of the vines is 20 years and some of them are as old as 80 years old. Those older vines tend to produce wines of greater extraction and intensity of flavor. The biggest difference in terms of wine-making method between the Hemar Roble and Thursday's Hemar Joven is the way they were aged. Roble spent 7 months in a combination of French and American oak barrels as opposed to Joven's tank aging. Upon opening this wine is pretty tight and shows significant tartness. A solid hour in the decanter does wonders for this selection. The color is a deep and dark purple.
Once it has had the chance to breathe the nose displays big blackberry and cherry notes. The first sip brings out some cedar and subtle spice notes. It's immediately obvious that this is a more full bodied, richer wine than the Joven. The mid-palate is full and round with a real silkiness. More dark berry fruit and some mushroom and earthiness come out in the middle. This wine has excellent acidity and is very well balanced. The finish has white pepper and dark chocolate notes alongside each other. This wine will pair well with medium strength cheeses and roast meats. I thought it went fabulously well with a roast pork loin.
The way the oak is well integrated into this wine but noticeable along with the terrific acidity and rich fruit lead me to believe this wine has a few solid years ahead of it. I imagine the fruit will soften over the next few years allowing the subtle earthiness to emerge further. I suspect it'll evolve nicely for at least two to three years and drink well for another two or three after that.
The 2006 Hemar Roble is a step up up in complexity, length of finish and overall elegance from the Hemar Joven. It retails at just over $20.00 which is a couple of dollars more than the Joven. They're very different wines, both enjoyable in their own right.
Imported by the Ravensvale Group.
Stay Tuned! Spanish Wine Week continues for 3 more days.
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