Cork out… first taste… It’s a bit volatile, a bit harsh, the tannins are angry, they’ve been stuck in there too long… although not really long enough to age, mature and wisen. So they jump about everywhere, roaring like a young Lion, not quite ready to be in control… yet. But there is plenty of fruit hiding behind this mess. A lot of blackberries, picked at the end of a long, hot summer. A few black cherries in the mix too but still shy. And the charcoal of the oak. It behaves like a youngster who needs to be left alone for a while to get quiet and let the anger subside.
A couple of hours later and the fruits are out to play, bouncing merrily left and right. Mr chocolate is here too, looking bitter but vigilant, making sure it all goes smoothly. The tannins are still kicking about but they made friends with the fruits and are playing together. It’s a tight fist in a velvet glove, or masterfully conducted symphony being played.
But this moment is ephemeral… it goes up in smoke, slowly but surely it slips away like a dream. You want to hang on to it. A little longer, just a little bit longer… you need another fix. And another. The smoky finish is a permanent call for more shots to be fired. But soon…the barrel is empty and it’s time to pack in.
It was great playing with you Embeleso Amigo. My friend the Italian enjoyed it too. You’ve really hit it on. We should all meet again soon.
Embeleso Rioja Crianza 2010 from Naked Wines
Grape variety: 100% Tempranillo
Winemaking: aged 1 year in american oak, old and new, varying toast levels in the barrel
The Bolognese recipe is based on the traditional Italian beef ragu but I added courgettes and mushrooms.