Costco is a place for great finds on international wines. They tend to stock great values from Rioja and these two wines are no exception. Rioja wines are lower in alcohol than wines from Washington and California and are more balanced. Both are really novel expressions of Rioja.
One of the more famous wineries in Rioja is Marques de Caceres. I was lucky enough to visit the winery when I was in Spain last year. Funny thing was that the winery was not set up to taste their wine. Instead they handed us over small bottles of their wine as a gift for visiting their winery. Pretty amazing stuff!
For more than four decades, this winery has been delivering great Riojas for a decent price. They produce a great Grand Reserva, but their Reserva is also great and commands a lower price tag. Their 2008 Reserva spends 20 months in oak and then has 18-24 more months in the bottle. Buy this one while you still can!
Another wine of great value is the 2009 Vina Eguia Reserva. This is a different vintage than the Caceres and critics have agreed that the 2009 vintage in Rioja is slightly better than 2008. Vina Eguia was established in the 1980s but rumor is that some of the vines at the winery date back to the 1920s. Neal Martin who writes for Robert Parker has really loved this winery recently.
Hope you can find these two great value wines from Spain!
2008 Marques de Caceres Rioja Reserva- Oak with blackberry and smoke on the nose. Palate is rich and needs 30 minutes of decanting to open up. Blackberry, black cherry and cola gives this an atypical flavor profile for this wine. Very tasty, with good viscosity. Drink now or cellar for 2 years. -91
2009 Vina Eguia Rioja Reserva- Heavy oak on the nose with cranberry and mulling spices. Palate has sour cherry, cranberry, orange peel and spice cake, over light tannins. Drink now. -91