Does that sound a little like a noise a monkey would make? Say it fast, “Muga, Muga, Muga.” No actually, it’s a state of the art winery in Rioja, Spain. I recently visited the area and was blown away by my visit. I’ve been on thousands of winery visits. No really, I went to 125 wineries on my honeymoon alone. We’re divorced now, …..Duh! It was the best winery tour ever; informative, sincere, and factual, all with a real depth of knowledge.
Rioja, is probably the best known wine producing region in Spain. Dominated by the Tempranillo grape and a lot of American oak ageing. (Yes, they do import our oak) The wines are typically soft, round, and very approachable upon release. The wine we tasted:
Muga White 2014 – Rioja, known for their red wines, actually make some very delicious whites. This is a blend of 90% Viura and 10% Malvasia grapes. It possesses crisp, clean, tropical fruit flavors, and yet has a touch of creaminess because it is barrel fermented. $12-15/bottle.
Muga Rosado 2014 – This rosé, on the fuller side, interestingly is made from 30% white grapes. It’s a little more serious of a wine than your average “picnic style rosé” having watermelon and strawberry nuances. $10/bottle.
Muga Rioja Reserva 2011 – The base wine of the winery is anything but basic. Aged 24 months in oak and another year in the bottle. It possesses youngish soft tannins and a multitude of dark fruit flavors with the obvious creamy oak overtones. $25/bottle.
Muga Rioja Seleccion Especial 2010 – A step up from the Reserva with longer oak aging and sourced from older vines. It has similar flavors to its younger brother but with longer aging potential. $40/bottle.
Torre Muga 2011 – Very modern, a new wave style of Rioja. This is a proprietary blend of mostly Tempranillo and a dash of Mazuelo and Graciano. This was my personal favorite. It’s dark, but not brooding, and yet very aromatic. This attractive red is long lived yet ready to drink now. $75/bottle.