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Olivares Altos De La Hoya 2005

November 5, 2007

altos.jpg~$9US 90% Mourvedre (aka: Monastrell) /10% Grenache

Fairly opaque ruby jewel tones. Imparts a rich nose of blackberries, white pepper, tobacco, and some wild gamey notes. Very nice texture and balance on the palate – round and viscous, with bittersweet chocolate notes coming through. The tannins are a bit aggressive and drying in the finish, but the wine redeems itself with some restrained oak, vanilla, and a cornbread-like(?!) ending.

This wine has a helluva lot to offer in the sub-$15 category (let alone the sub $10) in terms of character and wine-craft. The Monastrell grape shines through- showing the varietally-correct deep black fruits, alcohol, tannins, and a wild, meatiness. The mouthfeel is where this excels – it is simply stimulating in the mouth. Another great food wine for red meats; it has enough fruit up-front, and balances it with some old-world charm. Hard not to like this effort, especially for the price.

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