Tempranillo is quickly becoming a favorite varietal among Southern Oregon wine producers and consumers. The grape has a long-standing history in its native Spain, and is considered by many to be the “noble grape” of that country. Tempranillo is the main grape used in the Rioja region and those wines are world renowned. The name itself translates to “little early one” referencing the tendency for Tempranillo grapes to ripen earlier than most red wine grapes, and it does, particularly in the region of its origin.
Tempranillo has shown wonderful versatility in wine production styles. It can be enjoyed young; however, the most notable Tempranillos are oak-aged from several months to several years.
In a cooler climate, Tempranillo exhibits acidity and vibrancy. In warmer temperatures the grape develops higher sugar levels and thicker skins – producing deep, rich coloration.
Southern Oregon has Earl Jones, of Abacela Winery in the Umpqua Valley, to thank for recognizing the ideal growing conditions of this area for growing his favorite grape varietal.
Earl searched the nation to find the right conditions for the grape, and it was his first plantings and production that encouraged other grape growers and producers to embrace Tempranillo as an integral part of their wine program. It became clear that the warm summer days and cooler nights of the Rogue Valley – sometime varying as much as 30-40 degrees – were the ideal for cultivating these grapes with distinction. Tempranillo is now grown in Umpqua and Rogue valleys and it is enjoying a fast-growing popularity in both these appellations of Southern Oregon.
Tempranillo is a wonderful wine to pair with food. Being from Spain, where tapas also originated, it is a sure bet with the varied flavors found in these little plates. Match this wine with medium-bodied to full-bodied dishes, particularly those that are braised, grilled, or smoked. Showing its versatility, Tempranillo is excellent to serve with foods with a degree of spice, or with a sweet berry sauce. Play up the rustic flavors by pairing this wine with game or meats that have herb infusions. In fact, the wine is so wonderfully versatile for complimenting a meal – it seems to have been designed especially for that purpose.
Kriselle Cellars is proud to introduce our 2009 Tempranillo. The wine is a beauty in color – a rich ruby with a purple rim. The signature Tempranillo aromas of fresh berries and purple plums are met on the palate with vanilla, herb and spice. You will also note a sweet smoke nuance from the oak aging. The wine is dense and focused, with firm tannins that provide a long, lingering finish. This regal full-bodied wine is a treasure for those of us who enjoy a big, juicy wine. The wine will evolve with cellar ageing. Tannins will soften and flavors will become more integrated over the next few years.
Our 2009 Tempranillo can be found at several of your favorite local restaurants. Find our restaurant partners by navigating to “Buy our Wine” – Restaurants on our website. By the bottle you can purchase our Tempranillo at Harry and David’s flagship store in Medford OR or at The Wine Studio in Gig Harbor WA . You can order on-line and have it delivered to your door!
We hope you will pull the cork on our newest release and enjoy the 2009 Tempranillo with the finest things in life: family, friends and food.