2008 Bodegas Puelles Rioja Reserva (Previously $18) SKU #1297739

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RP 91
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Professional Reviews

K&L Notes

Jesús Puelles is one of the most talented vignerons in Rioja. Hailing from a long line of vineyard worker/owners, Puelles knows the terruño in his little slice of land in the Rioja Alta town of Abalos. Nearly all of the grapes for his red wines come from his own 26 hectares, which are generally north facing and located between 300 and 600 meters in altitude, and all within the village of Abalos. This is very rare in a region where sourcing from various villages, and even sub-zones, is more the norm. The 2008 vintage was a fresh one in Rioja, with marked Atlantic climactic influence and wines that show a great balance between generous fruit and bright acidity--it's a vintage that perfectly highlights the Puelles style, creating a Reserva that is delicious now and should improve in the cellar for at least another several years.

Staff Reviews

  • Christina Stanley
    By: Christina Stanley
    K&L Staff Member
    This is an exceptional Rioja and an amazing value. Bodegas Puelles is known for their purity of ripe, juicy fruit, and the Reserva is just restrained enough to maintain balance of acidity, and is never over oaked. With nine years of aging, this wine is beautifully softened and ready to drink.
  • Jim Barr
    By: Jim Barr
    K&L Staff Member
    I believe that of all the Reservas that our Spanish winebuyer, Joe Manekin, has brought in directly from Bodegas Puelles, this 2008 may be their finest and best production to date. And that evaluation is nothing to sneeze at, for the previous vintages have been outstanding to exceptional. Medium-deep ruby in color with youthful reddish edges, the opulent, highly perfumed nose is loaded with blackberry to plumy to vanillan to anise to cedary set of overtones that are completely uniformed and complementary to each quality. Carrying over wonderfully to a broad, rich, viscous, elegant, and pure, yet totally balanced, complex palate impression at entry to finish, this is an amazing Rioja Gem with layers of flavor and a presentation that says “You can drink me now, but I will get better with more aging!” I have brought several cases of this Gem home at Rusty’s urgent demands for consumption over the next ten to fifteen-plus years, and he honestly thinks that you need to seriously do the same. AN EXCEPTIONAL NEAR-TERM/LONG-TERM VALUE. ENJOY! …..A K&L WINE MERCHANTS’ DIRECT IMPORT….. ***** 14.0% ABV *****
    Drink from 2017 to 2030
  • Greg St. Clair
    By: Greg St. Clair
    K&L Staff Member
    I think this is my favorite wine from all of the different Puelles we have carried. I've always like the classic feel and flavors but this wine seems more complete, it has more mid-palate fruit to go along with that savory entry. My one issue with Rioja has always been American oak but in this wine it is so well integrated it isn't even noticed. Extraordinary balance, length coupled with superb weight and a long, vibrant and lifting finish.
    Drink from 2017 to 2027
  • Joe Manekin
    By: Joe Manekin
    K&L Staff Member
    There is no under $20 Rioja in our stock that tows as fine a line between balanced fruit expression and savoriness, modernism and classicism, all while using 100% estate grown, mature vine fruit from the single Rioja Alta village of Abalos. 2008 was a relatively cooler vintage in Rioja Alta, one that allows the tannin structure and balanced acidity to shine. That said, Puelles' Reserva does have a consistent stylistic stamp that shines year after year: focused cherry fruit, a bit dusty perhaps, with well formed, rounded tannins and a gently earthy savor that makes this such an ideal wine at table: Tuesday night with a garlicky lentil stew, good bread and Manchego, or Saturday night with lamb loin chops. Puelles is undoubtedly one of our favorites - not simply because we know and love the family and import the wines, but because the wines are delicious and are wonderfully evocative Riojas.


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