This is far and away the best Mirto of all time. It’s ripe and brawny, with bacon and black-fruit aromas that put it squarely into the Nuevo Classic mold. In the mouth, licorice and nutmeg flavors give character to smooth blackberry and dark plum flavors, while the finish is cushioned, herbal and long. Immediately appealing but with five to ten years of aging potential.
Hickory is the lead aroma, followed by notes of leather, earthy berry and spice. It feels juicy, lively and traditional, with a fine body-to-acid ratio. This offers classic Rioja flavors of red fruit, tomato, tobacco, dill and vanilla, with a long, consistent finish. It’s healthy and drinkable now through 2017.
Deep and dark, with fruitcake, black fruit and chocolate aromas. The wine has vibrancy and depth, which are the keys to getting the so-called “modern formula” right. Flush and ripe in terms of mouthfeel, with black plum, bitter chocolate and fine coffee flavors on the plump finish. Drink now through 2011.
There’s no denying the wine’s core strengths, which start with the bouquet’s campfire and prune qualities and extend onto the palate, where peppy raspberry and plum flavors take over. This is a complete, stylish Rioja that’s about halfway through the aging process. It’s still juicy and agile, with licorice and raisin notes adding some sweetness. Drink now–2016.
Clean and polished, but not as expressive as the company it’s running with. The nose is spicy, forward and full of plum and berry. A bit acidic and racy, with good flavors of cherry, mint and oak. Finishes swift but snappy. Very good but playing in a tough division.
Good color and intriguing aromas of baked fruit, tobacco and mint indicate that you’re getting some modern-styled ripeness along with traditional Rioja earth, spice and old man’s library. The palate is juicy and mildy fruity, while the finish pushes chocolate, vanilla, baking spice and tannins. Drinkable now but will age for another five years without a problem.
This is leathery and earthy up front, with cherry and berry aromas that come with a flower accent. It feels snappy, alert and slightly citrusy, with raspberry, red plum and vanilla flavors. It’s relatively short and choppy on the finish, but it’s fresh, with the proper amount of oak.
Though it’s a little hard-edged now, with some tannins to lose, this crianza has good structure and sturdy red fruit going for it. The nose, with some aeration, shows raspberry and cocoa powder nuances. Drink 2004 and beyond. —D.M.