02 Descendientes de J. Palacios, Bierzo Villa de Corullon
With humble Alvaro and Ricardo yielding props to their venerable Palacios lineage, even the name of this wine commands respect. Built on the obscure Mencia grape, it tastes like a peppery tempranillo blended with Right Bank merlot/cabernet franc and old-vines grenache. Flavors sliding cleanly into the next--I hate using the phrase "powerful, but elegant," but that's exactly what it is. Lightly grapey, with red plum skins, red pepper flakes, and bittersweet chocolate-covered cherries on the finish. I feel like I'm beside a wood-burning fire, sopping food from a terra cotta bowl. This wine takes me there. Wherever.