Michael Franz, winereviewonline.com: Crianza 2016, Descarte 2015 and Viñas 2017

Publié le : 2020-09-18 11:29:59
Catégories : Scores

Elias Mora Crianza 2016 | 93 points  
“Although this terrific Crianza release will ultimately outlive and probably surpass the 2017 Tinto from Elias Mora, it is only barely the better wine in the near term except for those who love oak spice and expect it from their Spanish reds.  To be clear, though, the oak is beautifully measured to accent the fruit, which is itself so rich and sappy that it can easily handle the spicy, toasty notes without being overwhelmed.  Indeed, the core of fruit is so concentrated and compelling that I’m tempted to write “bloody” rather than “sappy,” as the rich texture and salty undertones really do taste like a bloody lip in the wake of one of the pond hockey fights of my youth.  Not everyone would like that simile, of course, but the Spanish know a bit about bull’s blood…which is surely what this region was named for in the Middle Ages, rather than bulls themselves.  Terrific now with food but really crafted for a decade’s worth of cellaring, you can use it according to your preferences and hit the mark either way.” 
Michael Franz Aug 18, 2020
Descarte 2015 | 93 points  
“This wine shows its cards from the outset, which is a bad pun based on the label’s design, but a true account of how it presents itself to the eye, nose and palate.  Very deeply pigmented and quite apparently rich and viscous in its physical appearance when swirled, it is evidently formidable juice.  The pleasant surprise is that it doesn’t show all of its cards at first blush, as the oak in this 2015 release is actually more reserved and reticent than in this Bodega’s 2016 Crianza, seeming more French than American, and more sweet than toasty.  In any case, the result is a completely alluring wine, with succulent fruit notes predominant in the bouquet, showing quite full ripeness as one would expect from this quite warm vintage, but no raisiny or over-ripe notes.  The flavors are again all about lavish fruit, with impressive density but no excess weight, as there’s enough acidity to provide focus and energy.  There’s also plenty of tannin, but it is swaddled in so much plushy fruit that the wine shows no hard edges, even though it is sufficiently structured to develop over the course of at least 6 – 8 years, during which time it will become even more interesting as tertiary notes from bottle age add savory notes to the lovely core of fruit.  Deal me in.”    
Michael Franz Aug 18, 2020
Elias Mora Tinto 2017 | 92 points  
“My score of 92 may seem a bit high for an entry-level wine, but I have every confidence that you’ll agree that I’ve got it right if you taste this delicious offering.  A persistent problem in wine criticism is that wines are often scored in a scaled way conforming to where they stand in a series, price wise, from particular producers.  But the fact is, modestly oaked Tempranillo from the high plain of central Spain provides some of the most fabulously pure, satisfyingly delicious fruit in all the world of wine.  This is a stellar case in point.  Darkly colored and deeply concentrated, it shows its seriousness immediately, but then its playful side emerges in the form of very expressive aromas and flavors showing both red and black tones, with almost no overt oak but a very appealing undertone of saline minerality.  Full-bodied but still fresh, formidable but still fruity and fun, this is terrific young Toro.” 
Michael Franz Aug 18, 2020


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