Strawberry Fields Forever

Clear brilliant ruby with garnet-tinged edges. Clean, ripe fruit, polished and elegant with just a touch of green edginess.

I tasted the 2010 alongside the whole Muga line-up at a trade-tasting last week and it impressed me terribly sandwiched between the cheaper stuff and the $100 Terra Muga. Critics will point to its near-perfection of ripe, seamless fruit and lack of anything redeemingly ‘Rioja’ about it, but the funny part is: these are the same people who drink Opus 1 and Scarecrow. Sure it’s a little *idealized* and manufactured into a much more-California style–and I have a high tolerance for Euro funk–but often Spain falls well below my threshold.

In the mouth, more clean ripeness, heavenly dripping dark fruit, luscious and sweet, with a nice, light-handed complement of oak. Dark blackberry and cherry preserves co-exist with gritty petrichor and tannin bite.

No, it’s not old-world. And I understand how controversial *clean, fruit-driven European wines* can be. It hits on a lot of levels for me, but I’m just a jerk from California.

2009 BODEGAS MUGA ‘Prado Enea’ Temp/GR 80/20 Rioja Spain 14.0

www.bodegasmuga.com

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