The 2004 Ondarre Reserva Rioja was garnet red in the glass with a bit of a brickish rim. It had aromas of dried cherry, raspberry and licorice. Flavors included those of the aromas as well as cranberry with a bit of tobacco. It was medium-bodied, 13.5% abv with mild, dusty tannins and high acidity. It had a medium-length dry finish. A very nice example of Rioja!
Nocera is a native grape from Sicily. It comes from the Messina province which is located in the northeast. Nocera is a quality red wine grape that is most known as a blender in the red wines of the Faro DOC. I had the opportunity to taste some pure versions (which according to Wine Searcher are rare) this week at a trade tasting held at Roma Restaurant in Houston. Wine production in the region dates back to the 14th Century BC, however, phylloxera decimated the vineyard area in 1881 leaving it at a fraction of its original size. The area boasts a Mediterranean climate with sunny days and coastal breezes, moderate rainfall, and mild winters, all ideal for grape growing. The Nocera grape is a bluish/black color and has a thick skin which allows for the production of structured wines with prominent tannins which are balanced by good acidity. High alcohol is common. Red wines produced from the grapes are an intense ruby color with purple highlights and aromas and flavors of dark fruits a
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