A good Crianza is enough to make you cry tears of joy.
Wait. That’s what it means, isn’t it? Crianza?
Sold to me as an example of the “new wave” of Rioja, it didn’t vary enormously from the old wave, as far as I could tell. If anything, it was bigger and carried more fruit but none of that was out of context, or, for that matter, balance.
When a guy asked me why I enjoyed it so much, I figured to baffle him with wine words. Dark fruit balsamic, I said. A silence. Hey, he said, I get it.
On the cusp of bluffing, I realized that I’d accidentally found the critical quality of this thing. Temperanillo, mildly aged, but before that made with an eye to upping the volume for – probably – American palates. So much so that it’s easy to compare to the most recent Reserva I’d drunk, which must mean something.
The late seventies and early eighties were the upslope and downslope of the musical new wave. Screw those noisesome faux rebels; bring on the Spanish wine new wave.