Muga Minor

A brash, ridiculously young Rioja I bought–honestly–because of the ‘Muga’ buried in the title. I mean… why not? Dark deep crimson in the glass, its legs staining all along the clear rim. Crazy funky euro in the nose, an old-world dedication to earth and sultry ripeness difficult to explain. Grainy and pitched with mineral, the robust black cherry carried on wings of acid and granular verve.

Tasting it is a wash of enamel-peeling acid and peppery hotness, but gloriously thin and effervescent. A *barrel sample* in body: this needs YEARS to settle down and the big question remains: will it ever? I think everything contained in this wine will express itself in a decade, patience and proper storage aligned. A lack of fruit at this juncture argues against, but when have we held this against Rioja? It’s not Crianza, it’s not Reserva… it’s just plain old Rioja DOC and while elegance is lacking, structure remains. Tempted to buy a few of these and forget about them in the cellar for a decade. Abrasive and mired in chalky ire, the brilliance of black cherry remains buried deep inside and at this price-point, arguments of *never coming around* are worth the investment.

2020 BODEGAS LUIS GURPEGUI MUGA Tempranillo Rioja DOC Spain 13.5

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