Miguel Torres “Celeste” Crianza Ribera del Duero 2007 | Spain
No, this is not a wine made by the mixed-martial arts fighter — though it is similarly intense and packs a punch.
“Celeste” Crianza is made by Miguel Torres the wine producer — a diverse family-owned company that makes wine in Spain, Chile, and California. This particular bottle comes from the Ribera del Duero region in Spain (the company also owns vineyards in Penedes, Jumilla, Priorat, Toro, Conca de Barbera, and Priorat). Torres has the largest winery in Spain and is its largest producer, exporting to 140 countries.
This wine is the family's first foray into Ribera del Duero. The name “Celeste” is translated from Spanish as “celestial”, “heavenly”, or simply, “sky”, and refers to the fact that the vineyards are located 895 meters above sea level — in other words, way up in the sky and close to the heavens. To me this 100% Tempranillo wine is more like a modern Rioja than a Ribera del Duero, because it is clean, has upfront juicy red berry fruit, and has a distinctive vanilla oak element. But then again, I haven't really been “into” Ribera del Duero in a while, so maybe that region is modernizing their wine as well.
The nose has an opulent floral fragrance with ripe red fruits and a hint of cassis. Rose petals, cherry, sweet blueberry, and boysenberry. In the mouth it is ripe and juicy with flavors of blueberry and boysenberry. The texture is creamy smooth. Tannins are mild as is the acidity; this is borderline “fat”. The finish is a bit hot, but that's what you get with such a ripe flavor profile.
Due to the fatness and heat this is a little difficult to match with food. But, I like it as a “cocktail” wine or “fireside” wine; something to drink on its own.