Baigorri, Rioja*

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*Yes, yes, you’ve spotted it: a geographical mistake on our part. As, obviously, the Rioja region, in northern Spain, isn’t in Andalucía. Well done. Gold stars, and all that. But when you’re in Spain, exploring and seeking out the very best of produce, then it would be kind of churlish to omit a beautifully crafted wine (it’s available in El Corte Inglés in Marbella and Carrefour in Estepona – so, erm, yeah, there’s the Andalucian connection).

Baigorri is our go-to vino tinto when there’s something fabulous to celebrate. It’s not cheap (but it ain’t no Pingus, either). Made by a small, indie winery in Rioja, this new generation bodega, handed down from father to son, practices brave, modern winemaking techniques, producing some of the best Riojas we’ve tasted. Only a limited number of bottles are created, with the utmost care and attention, and the wine is only available to buy in specialist wine stores (plus decent supermarkets, as mentioned above).

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Bodegas Baigorri | by hansbrinker

We were lucky to spend some time in Rioja, touring the incredible ‘vinarchitecture’ and had a fascinating tour of Baigorri, which looked like something out of a Star Wars set. After the tour, we were taken down to the restaurant and staff ‘chill out’ area to taste some wine. Always the best bit of a vineyard tour. Here waiting for us were freshly-baked hunks of bread and delicious wafer-thin slices of jámon, with two of their most coveted wines opened and breathing. As we sniffed and slurped the wines, our guide had snuck off, to return a few minutes later with the chef from the restaurant who presented us with a little ‘amuse bouche’ of morcilla (black pudding) wrapped in super-thin pastry with an intense sauce of roasted red peppers. Paired with the bodega’s exquisite Garage vintage, this tiny little snack was one of the best ‘meals’ we’ve ever eaten.

Tasting notes for the Baigorri Garage 2007:
Roasted coffee, warm spices, ripe red, compote-y fruits with almost smoky and licorice notes. This is a big, meaty wine, with intense tannins, giving it a long finish on the palate.

+details:
Baigorri, Ctra. Vitoria-Logroño, km 53, 01307 Samaniego, Álava
www.bodegasbaigorri.com

 

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