There’s something to be said for a bit of age on a bottle. When this wine was released a few years ago, it didn’t make any friends in the wine critic community. Originally released at $16 a bottle, El Molet earned lukewarm reviews. Wine Enthusiast gave it an 86, Vinous gave it an 87, and Wine Spectator another 87.
These are “good” ratings, but nothing sells in the US unless it has a rating of 90 or above. It didn’t sell. Eventually, the wine ended up in the discount bin that is our Chairman’s Selection program here in Pennsylvania.
There are a lot of wines in the PA Wine & Spirits stores with a similar story behind it. I usually recommend steering clear of such bottles, so why am I writing about this one?
This bottle is something of an ugly duckling. The first few years of it’s life, it was a bit green-toned and abrasive. That can happen to grapes that are harvested early, which is done to maintain structure and acidity. With a few years, the tannins have evolved, and this bottle has been revealed to be a swan.
This has matured into a hedonistic bottle of lush fig and milk chocolate. The velvet structure hints at eucalyptus and bay leaves with a finish that moves toward fresh blueberries and espresso. A real delight. Buy a case and enjoy it over the winter.