Bodegas Muriel, Rioja DOC Gran Reserva (Spain) Viñas Viejas 2011

($26, Quintessential Wines):  Rioja is one of the very few regions of the world where consumers can find well-aged wines at reasonable prices, and sometimes, like this one, ridiculously low ones.  Where else could you find a decade old red at this price?  So, if you’re curious about, or just adore the flavors of, aged wines, here’s the place to start.  Dried rather than fresh fruit flavors are predominant, accented by leathery and subtle earthy accents.  The savory side of wine is singing here.  Warm and enveloping, this mid-weight red cries for autumnal fare or even a winter stew.  Its freshness and lively character will cut through virtually anything on the table, so don’t get hung up on specific pairings.  Just try it with dinner.
93 Michael Apstein Jul 20, 2021