After all these years (and all those wines!), the high level of winemaking and the low cost of Spanish wines still amazes me. For instance, this bottle of reserva should cost twice what it does, and even then would be a steal. Not that I’m complaining.
Dinastia Vivanco is located in Rioja Alta, the northern Basque quarter of Rioja. In every vintage, the winemaker selects the top barrels of its wine to bottle. In a typical vintage, he retains less than 25% of the wine. The rest, he sells off. This level of selection is crazy expensive but results in a beautiful wine.
The reserva is a balanced beast of a bottle. Dense notes of tobacco and chocolate are layered over ultra-ripe tannins and glass-staining opacity. The opulent texture holds smoky vanilla and ambergris in its grip, slowly releasing savory notes into a finish of fresh red fruit and quince.