Spanish wines shone at an informal tasting at C Wines & Bites in Petaling Jaya recently. The Bodegas Valdubon wines we had were from the Ribera del Duero region on the northern plateau of Spain, celebrated for its tradition of wine-making that dates back 2,000 years.
The Valdubon estate is all planted with tempranillo grapes, a black variety that makes full-bodied red wines. Francisco Javier Aladro Prieto, winemaker of Bodegas Valdubon explained to me what to expect of each wine for the tasting, first the Valdubon Verdejo, a white wine from the aromatic verdejo grape variety. It’s from a neighbouring wine estate, Rueda, known for dry aromatic white wines made from verdejo.
I had had a taste and already liked it. “The nose is green, with vegetable aromas. There’s grass and fennel on the palate and acidity. It’s a wine to enjoy with food, like rice and fish. It’s astringent, with a slight bitter aftertaste,” said Francisco.
We hit the first red, the young Valdubon Tempranillo 2015 that is non-tannic, plummy with good acidity. “It’s a very drinkable in, to enjoy by itself, without food. It’s a perfect to keep a conversation going,” said Francisco.
Then it was the Valdubon Roble 2014, still considered a young wine, having spent four months in oak. It’s a wine to enjoy with tapas — which we had at C Wines — but not very rich food. “This wine is in fashion in Spain. The nose is a mixture of fruit, coconut and spice. It has a very long finish and invites you to have another sip. Which I did, again and again!
The Valdubon Crianza 2013 is an aged wine, according to the winemaker, with 12 months in oak barrel and more than a year in bottle so far. “It’s more tannic than the Roble, a more complex nose of thyme, coconut and tobacco. The palate is well-structured, with well-balanced acidity. It’s a wine to enjoy with lamb and beef.”
The wines got more elegant with the Valdubon Reserva 2010, a wine to enjoy with meat and even chocolate which Francisco regarded as “very brave but very nice!” The Reserva had spent 22 months in ok barrel, and now more than three years in bottle. It was cherry red, with a very spicy nose, and hints of thyme, rosemary and chocolate. It’s more tannic and softer than the Crianza.
The evening was crowned with the Valdubon Honoris 2012, the only wine which was decanted. “It’s our top wine, produced with grapes from a vineyard which is more than 60 years old. It’s fermented in wood vats, then aged in new French oak barrels or 23 months. The colour is an intense, deep red. The nose is a mixture f fruit, alcohol and chocolate. The mouth is rounded – very tannic ad very soft at the same time. It’s great to have with lamb, especially.” I revelled in the wine which delivered on every promise.
The Bodegas Valdubon wines are distributed by Asiaeuro Wines & Spirits Sdn Bhd.