1996, Finca Allende, Aurus

Rioja, Spain

(Priced at per bottle)

Score: 85

Drinking Dates: 2012

Critic: Neal Martin

Tasted: 31-Aug-2012

The 2003 was declassified and blended into the Allende, so moving swiftly on, the 2004 Aurus has a classy bouquet of dark plum, lavender, dried herbs and spice box that is very complex and satisfying. The palate is medium-bodied with taut tannins and impressive purity, dark cherry and dark plum infused with marmalade and white pepper. The finish is dense and backward, suggesting that it requires four to five years bottle age. Drink 2015-2025+ Commencing with the Allende Blanc, I was impressed by how well this ages. Predominantly Viura with a higher percentage of Malvasia in older vintages, it develops a fine waxy texture and almost dried Barsac-like personality.