Bodega Venta Morales Tempranillo 23

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La Mancha, the largest wine region in Spain, has a long-standing tradition of viticulture that dates back to Roman times. Over the years, vignerons in La Mancha have danced the fine line of adapting to modern viticulture and winemaking techniques while preserving its time-honored traditions.

Bodegas Volver, established in 2004, may be new to the party in La Mancha; however, they've quickly gained a reputation for producing top-quality, affordable wines that beautifully reflect the unique La Mancha terroir. The winery, founded by Rafael Cañizares, is famous for its commitment to reviving old vine plantings of indigenous Spanish grape varietals in La Mancha.

Tempranillo, Spain's signature grape, is a bit of a chameleon, exhibiting unique characteristics that can vary significantly from region to region. In La Mancha, it's all about fruit-forward and approachable, featuring a vibrant interplay of red and black fruits. Tempranillo grown here produces bold, ripe reds with an immediately captivating youthful exuberance. Tempranillo from Rioja is another story altogether, and there, the wines showcase elegant complexity with more structure thanks to the extended time parked in American oak barrels.

Venta Morales is a collaboration between Rafael Cañizares and long-time Spanish importer Jorge Ordóñez. The pair is dedicated to producing the best affordable Tempranillo sourced from their young vine holdings in the village of Casa de Los Pinos. The Tempranillo sourced for Venta Morales is dry-farmed on trellises, with vinification and aging entirely in stainless steel, perfectly preserving the aromatics and fresh lift of the fruit.

This smooth and supple red is a poster child for the youthful, vibrant vibe of La Mancha wines. In your glass, you're treated to inviting notes of ripe cherries and blackberries framed by hints of mocha. The smooth and well-rounded palate is loaded with red plum, red currant, and black cherry, finishing with a nice beam of dark chocolate. Balanced acidity and pleasingly soft tannins create a clean, lingering finish, leaving you longing for another sip or two.

Venta Morales Tempranillo shines on the porch and patio, and you'll love its fruit-forward freshness and smooth texture. It's a terrific red porch sipper; however, you'll also love it at the dinner table. Its an excellent match for grilled meats, lamb chops and beef kebabs. The wine's subtle spiciness also complements traditional Spanish cuisine, particularly tapas with chorizo, patatas bravas, and manchego cheese. Vegans and vegetarians will love it with olive oil roasted vegetables or a hearty mushroom risotto.

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