2012 La Rioja Alta Vina Ardanza Reserva Rioja Spain
Medium-high intensity, garnet–red with a cherry rim. The nose stands out for its fresh, spicy character, with hints of sweet cherries, redcurrants, and ripe strawberries assembled with notes of black pepper, sweet liquorice, nutmeg, coffee, mocha, and cinnamon. Intense and well-balanced in the mouth, with a soft freshness, nice structure, and delicately elegant tannins. Silky finish, with a good aftertaste, where sweet red fruit and balsamic notes give it a broad ending.
Pair with roasted lamb, red meats, barbecues, large game, spicy fish casseroles, smoked and aged cheeses.
Traditional and beautiful in character with plum, balsamic, orange-peel and leather aromas and flavors. It’s medium-to full-bodied with creamy texture and a long, intense aftertaste. Drink or hold.
Rated 95 Points James Suckling
Garnacha is an important component in the 2012 Viña Ardanza Reserva, where it represents 20% of the blend (the rest is, of course, Tempranillo). 2011 was a difficult vintage for Garnacha, so Viña Ardanza was not produced that year and they jumped from 2010, which had the mention "Selección Especial," to 2012, where it returns to the regular Reserva. The wine is a prototype of polished and aged Rioja with a ruby color with some orange and a developed nose with subtle aromas of decayed leaves, sweet spices and some cherries in liqueur even, quite complex and harmonious. The palate is velvety but rich, with resolved tannins and a fine chalky mouthfeel, sleek and elegant, terribly balanced. The flavors are pure and defined, and there is an overall sense of harmony that I like very much. Brilliant Ardanza!
Rated 94 Points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate