Remirez de Ganuza produces red and white wines in the town of Samaniego, located in the Rioja region of Spain.
The 2004 Rioja I sampled was 90% Tempranillo and 10% Graciano. The wine was aged for 24 months in oak casks (80% French and 20% American). The label reported ABV was 14%.
Despite being a fan of many Riojas, I was very unimpressed with this bottle.
Prior to tasting, the wine was decanted for 3 hours.
The nose found a blend of red fruit, strawberry, and vanilla.
My first glass was consumed prior to the start of my meal. The palate found black fruit, spice, pepper, oak, and tannins. The tannins were overly harsh without any food. This wine stayed tight for the entire meal, never really opening up.
The finish was medium, and brought a slight touch of heat with it.
I paired this dish with a lettuce, tomato, and cucumber starter with a very, basic red wine vinegar and Spanish olive oil dressing. The entree was a beef roast with gravy and sides of mashed potatoes and steamed broccoli. The food did help to tame the tannins somewhat, but they were still present in a not-so-friendly way throughout.
I had high hopes for this bottle (but it was not to be!). The 2004 Remirez de Ganuza Rioja cost $73. I did not get the sense that cellaring will help improve this vintage (sometimes you think, a few more years may do it, not here), and at this price level, I’m not willing to take that chance.
Sadly, I would have to recommend a pass on this wine.