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1996 Vinedos del Contino Gran Reserva Rioja
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93 Points | Stephen Tanzer's IWC - September/October 2006

($65) Dark red. An oak spice- and vanilla-dominated bouquet of cherry jam, pomegranate, rhubarb and candied licorice is seductive and wonderfully expansive. Fresh and lively on the palate, with the intense cherry flavor accented by musky notes of mocha, licorice, clove and vanilla. Traditional Rioja at its best, offering a compelling combination of intense, sweet fruit; complicating earth and herbal tones; and gentle, silky tannins. Finishes very long, with impressive focus. (Pasternak Wine Imports, Harrison, NY)

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About Spain

Spain has more acres under vine than any other country and ranks third in production behind Italy and France. Much of this output continues to be hot-country jug wine made to satisfy the everyday thirsts of the domestic and greater European markets
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Tempranillo, arguably the most famous of Spain's native grapes, is a vibrant, aromatic varietal that offers spicy, red fruit aromas and flavors. The grape's name translates to "little early one," a moniker that references fruit's early ripening tendency-- Tempranillo thrives even with a short growing season. The varietal is at its best in...
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