We bring you jaunt over to Spain to start our week. One of the hallowed estates in La Rioja, Bodegas LAN was founded in 1972. LAN is an acronym based on the initials of each of the three provinces that form the D.O.Ca. Rioja: Logroño (currently part of La Rioja), Alava and Navarra. Their oak program is particularly interesting as French, American, Russian and hybrid barrels (American staves and French oak heads built in the same barrel) are utilized in the blending. Bodegas LAN’s estate Viña Lanciano Vineyard parallels the Ebro river and is set on 72 hectares. Having visited the property a few years back it is hard to describe the beauty of the land. Grapes for their premium bottlings, the Viña Lanciano, the LAN A Mano and the Culmen. The vineyard has 24 plots, and is planted to Tempranillo, Mazuelo, Graciano and Garnacha vines, aged on average up to 60 years. During harvest grapes are hand-harvested and once in the winery, bunches and grains are individually selected by hand prior to fermentation.
A stunning value is their 2011 Bodegas LAN ‘Reserva’ (WWB, 93) which is dense, layered and completely irresistible right now. Even better was their 2014 Bodegas LAN ‘A Mano’ Rioja (WWB, 94) which has power and poise that few Rioja wines can achieve. Learn more about Bodegas LAN at http://www.bodegaslan.com Here are the great new release wines by Bodegas LAN.
2011 Bodega LAN ‘Reserva’ Rioja- This wine needs roughly an hour in the decanter to show its stuff. Once aroused, this outstanding wine begins with aromas of ripe oak, red cherry preserves, blood orange rind and suggestions of black plum. The palate is dense and lush, displaying orange rind, black cherry cough syrup, cigar box and Hoisin sauce flavors. Silky smooth and balanced, the long black fruit driven finish lingers. This is a stunning wine by Bodega LAN that delivers some incredible value. Drink 2017-2027- 93
2011 Bodega LAN ‘Vina Lanciano’ Rioja Reserva- Another strong showing in this vintage is the Vina Lanciano Reserva, which is composed of Tempranillo with Manzuelo and Graciano, and only made only made in great vintages. The wine begins with aromatics of red cherry, baking spices, red raspberry and teaberry with hints of milk chocolate. There are ripe flavors of red cherry, cedar, black pepper and sage. Showing its feminine side, this is medium bodied and lithe, as this Reserva is hard to resist right now. Drink 2017-2025- 90
2014 Bodega LAN ‘LAN A MANO’ Rioja- This stunning new wine is a compelling blend of 80% Tempranillo, 12% Graciano and 8% Manzuelo that was hand-harvested from the Vina Lanciano estate. The wine was first aged for seven months in French oak and further aged for another six months in Russian oak. The wine needs more than an hour decant to strut its stuff. Inky and bold, the wine begins with beautiful aromatics of black fruits, licorice and a touch of milk chocolate. The weight and power of this wine is absolutely outstanding as the silky tannins connect with dark fruit flavors and sterling minerality. Utterly compelling, try to resist this outstanding wine for at least another year. Drink 2018-2030- 94
2011 Bodega LAN 'Culmen Reserva' Rioja- The wine needs roughly two plus hours in the decanter to fully develop. Once aroused this begins with anise, cigar box and blackberry aromatics. The palate is exceedingly plush as the wine takes on a rather intoxicating rich mouthfeel that makes this Rioja nearly impossible to put down. Anise, sandalwood, wild blackberry cobbler flavors impress with a marvelous salinity that combines with a citrus driven finish that marks this delicious Rioja. Drink 2017-2030- 94