Bodegas y Viñedos Pujanza “Valdepoleo” Rioja 2017 … I admit I am a sucker for Rioja -but it has to be a good one – like this Pujanza Rioja from its Valdepoleo vineyard, produced by owner / winemaker, Carlos San Pedro. After helping his father in the vineyard since he was a child, Carlos set up Pujanza as his own project at the age of just 25 with the aim “to focus on the land so as to know and understand perfectly each of his plots and the behaviour of the grape varieties depending on the conditions of each year”. He looks at, smells and tastes wine from 7 plots within the Valdeporeo vineyard that are all worked differently according to the terroir. These seven wines are blended to a different “recipe” each year to produce a unique Rioja.
Only Tempranillo is used for this wine, fermented in stainless steel rather than oak and aged in large, more subtle French, rather than American, oak barrels to allow the fruit aromas to dominate. Red berries are the theme though you can also smell and taste dark plums and cherries with hints of blackberries and blueberries, together with spices and a subtle hint of chocolate and leather. The tannins are smooth having softened since the many wine critics awarded this wine its high scores. Deliciously smooth!