Spanish wines, at a bargain

Columnist March 17
Recommendations

★★★Exceptional  ★★Excellent ★Very Good

Availability information is based on distributor records. Wines might not be in stock at every listed store and might be available at additional stores. Check Winesearcher.com to verify availability, or ask a favorite wine store to order through a distributor.

Dave McIntyre is a wine columnist for The Washington Post. He also blogs at dmwineline.com. View Archive

These wines are further proof — if any were needed — that Spain offers a tremendous array of high-quality bargain wines.

Epifanio 2011

★★1 / 2

Ribera del Duero, Spain, $16

Ribera del Duero produces some of Spain’s most famous and expensive red wines. This bargain edition captures the leafy tobacco and stony earth characteristics of the tempranillo grape in a straightforward wine that is easy to drink now and should age well for a few years. Enjoy it with your last winter stew or your first steak off the grill. Alcohol by volume: 14.5 percent.

Elite: Available in the District at De Vino’s, Rodman’s, Whole Foods Market (Tenleytown); on the list at La Tasca. Available in Maryland at Bradley Food & Beverage and Cork & Fork in Bethesda, Edgewater Liquors, Wine Bin in Ellicott City, World Gourmet Wine & Beer in Potomac; on the list at Guardado’s in Bethesda, La Tasca in Baltimore, Mix Bar and Grill in Potomac, Pure Wine Cafe in Ellicott City. Available in Virginia at Arrowine & Cheese in Arlington, Classic Wines in Great Falls, Foods of All Nations and Whole Foods Market in Charlottesville, Wine Cabinet in Reston, Wine House in Fairfax; on the list at Cafe Renaissance in Vienna, La Tasca (Alexandria, Arlington), Mas Tapas and Zocalo in Charlottesville.

Enate Crianza Tempranillo-Cabernet Sauvignon 2007

★★1 / 2

Somontano, Spain, $16

This wine took a while to unfurl its character, so I recommend decanting or at least opening it an hour or two before dinner. Stylistically, it resembles a Rioja reserva, with wood spice and balsamic notes from oak aging. Dried sour-cherry flavors emerge with time. Enate also produces a nice tempranillo 2012 that sells for $11. ABV: 14.5 percent.

M Touton Selection: Available in the District at Ace Beverage and Cleveland Park Wine and Spirits. Available in Maryland at Bradley Food & Beverage in Bethesda, Mount Airy Liquors, Quench! Beer-Wine-Deli in Colesville, Total Discount Liquors in Eldersburg; on the list at Isabella’s in Frederick. Available in Virginia at Crystal City Wine Shop, Planet Wine & Gourmet in Alexandria, the Town Duck in Warrenton, Vino Market in Midlothian, Vino Veritas in Charlottesville, Wine Cabinet in Reston, Wine Lover’s in Richmond; on the list at Orzo Kitchen & Bar in Charlottesville, Patina in Richmond.

Lagar de Costa Albariño 2012

★★1 / 2

Rías Baixas, Spain, $23

On the fruitier side of albariño, it has the crystalline, bright and focused flavors of apricot and slate. Pair with seafood salads or grilled shellfish. Lagar de Costa also makes an albariño called Doelas de Lagar de Costa ($18) that is quite good and in wider distribution. ABV: 13 percent.

Elite: On the list in the District at Slate Wine Bar. Available in Maryland at Finewine.com in Gaithersburg. Available in Virginia at Arrowine & Cheese in Arlington, Unwined in Alexandria, Vienna Vintner, Wine House in Fairfax; on the list at Cafe Renaissance in Vienna, Mas Tapas in Charlottesville.

Mundo de Yuntero 2012 Tempranillo y Syrah

★★1 / 2

Manzanares, Spain, $9

The Jesús del Perdón cooperative is producing delicious bargains, including this blend of 85 percent tempranillo and 15 percent syrah. Juicy and gulpable, it retains the leafy, earthy notes of tempranillo and a core of acidity that keeps it grounded. Stock up for your weeknight burgers on the grill. ABV: 13 percent.

M Touton Selection: Available in the District at Chinatown Liquor, Cleveland Park Wine and Spirits. Available in Maryland at Bethesda Market, Georgetown Square Wine and Beer in Bethesda, the Bottle Shop in Potomac, Eddie’s Liquors in Baltimore, Hunt Valley Wine & Spirits in Cockeysville, Jason’s Wine & Spirits and Pine Orchard Wine in Ellicott City, Old Farm Liquors, Plus Mart, Riverside Liquors in Frederick, Quench! Beer-Wine-Deli in Colesville, Silesia Liquors in Fort Washington. Available in Virginia at Chain Bridge Cellars in McLean, Dominion Wine Shop in Falls Church, Market Street Wineshop in Charlottesville, the Town Duck in Warrenton, Wegmans (various locations).

Epilogo Sauvignon Blanc y Moscatel 2012

★★

Manzanares, Spain, $9

Another beauty from the Jesús del Perdón co-op, this is an unusual blend of 10 percent moscatel (moscato) to flesh out the sauvignon blanc. Ideal for patio sipping and pre-dinner nibbles. ABV: 12.5 percent.

M Touton Selection: Available in the District at Chinatown Liquor, Cleveland Park Wine and Spirits, Paul’s of Chevy Chase. Available in Maryland at Boulevard Wine & Spirits in Owings Mills, the Bottle Shop in Potomac, Bradley Food & Beverage and Georgetown Square Wine and Beer in Bethesda, Jason’s Wine & Spirits in Ellicott City, King’s Contrivance Liquor Shop in Columbia, Old Farm Liquors and Plus Mart in Frederick, Quench! Beer-Wine-Deli in Colesville, Silesia Liquors in Fort Washington, the Tasting Room at National Harbor. Available in Virginia at Chain Bridge Cellars in McLean, Crystal City Wine Shop, Grateful Red Wine & Gift Shop in Arlington, Leesburg Vintner, Out of Site Wines, Vienna Vintner in Vienna, the Tasting Room in Reston, Unwined (Alexandria, Belleview), Wegmans (various locations).

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