Baron de Ley, Rioja

2017 Baron de Ley, Rioja, Tempranillo (RT88) An introductory “varietal” bottling of 100% young vine Tempranillo that shows a medium ruby hue and a soft bouquet of red cherry, blackberry, rosemary and hints of soft chocolate in the background. The palate is fruit-driven with mouth coating tannin, some serious chewy texture and soft acidity. Drink now

2014 Baron de Ley, Rioja Riserva (RT91+) Crafted from Estate grown fruit and aged for 20 months in medium sized, used American oak casks, then aged for 24 months in bottle prior to release. This is ready to drink now but can also be laid down for mid-term cellaring. This wine hits a sweet spot in the portfolio hitting a terrific price point and quality. Medium ruby with an attractive, focused bouquet of blackberry, fresh sugar plum, crushed stone, hints of tobacco and sous bois. Tasty palate texture, light and supple with a nice balance of medium weight fruit, bright acidity and soft tannin. Artful tannin management makes this particularly attractive, with little signs of the American oak used in aging. Drink 2021-2028+

2017 Baron de Ley, Finca Monasterio (RT92) Blended from a combination of estate grown, 30+ year old Tempranillo (90%) with the balance being other varietals (based on what works best given the vintage), the juice is aged for 18 months in new French oak barrels followed by 6 month 10,000 liter French oak foudre. Crafted in a distinctly modernist style after hand selecting the grapes, this deep crimson expression shows a soft, alluring, deeply ripe style of red cherry, plum compote, menthol, cedar and notes of mineral and wet rocks polished on the palate with soft, round fruit and succulent acid finishing with ripe tannin. Tasty stuff, but I found myself being more attracted to the Riserva. Drink 2022-2032+