For anyone who doesn’t know, I love Spain. So it’s no surprise that when I’m faced with one of Spain’s most famous grape varietals, Tempranillo, I’m usually a fan.

Tempranillo is a grape grown mostly in Spain itself, and is typically a full-bodied wine, despite its translucent quality in the glass.

Our Tempranillo this week comes from Spain, from the vineyard Aguilar (2015).

At the nose, this wine hit us immediately with smoke, possibly leather and tobacco. Dark fruits–black cherries and plums–followed, and there was a certain earthy quality to the smell. It reminded us of a dark forest, full of moss and leaves.

Upon taking a sip, we were surprised to find a light, berry-centric front. Again, lots of plums and cherries. The middle was all spice–black pepper, cinnamon, clove. And this wine finished again with leather and smoke, lingering on the tongue long after the sip had been swallowed. This Tempranillo reminded Russ of a spiced pie, dark as the fruit was.

This wine was very full and strong, coating the tongue and mouth. It was not Russell’s favorite, but a clear winner to my tastes. (Have I told y’all I love a dark, smoky, bold red before? This baby was perfect.) 

More like Temper-nillo, am I right? You’d better include that. It’s a good joke. –my husband

The harmony, complexity, and completeness of this wine lends itself beautifully to pairing with nearly anything, but especially with a meaty dish or something quintessentially Spanish (obviously).

However, Russ and I agree this wine is also perfect for a night alone–sitting in a dark bathroom, candlelight flickering against the walls, classical music playing, lost deep in thought. Which is why we dubbed the Aguilar Tempranillo:

Tell me: does this wine sound like your style? Or is it too dark for your tastes? Will you join me in my love of this gorgeous Spanish grape?

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