Rioja, Rose wines, Spain

Muga Rosé 2010

Owned by: the Muga family
Grapes: Garnacha, Viura and Tempranillo
Region: Haro, Rioja Alta, Spain

See other wines from this producer:
Muga Blanco
Muga Reserva
Muga Prado Enea Gran Reserva
Muga Torre Muga

Maybe I hold a special place in my heart for this wine, because the winery started the same year, my father was born. Or maybe it is because it was the first Spanish wine I was actually able to pronounce and remember.Or perhaps, it’s because I was lucky enough to visit the Bodegas in 2007 and tasted wines personally with Juan Muga.

All of these reasons are truth, but the most important fact is that Muga just makes damn great wines, year after year. And that’s as simple as it gets.To me personally, Muga Rosé (in Spain Rosado) from Bodegas Muga in Rioja is the best Rosé I tasted, vintage by vintage.

Muga is the only Rosé I buy by the case (and it doesn’t last very long). That’s, of course, if I am lucky enough to get it. When this wine comes to the market, it’s usually gone within a week or so.This year, I didn’t get my case.

It was sold out before I found out about its release. But, to my amazement, for the first time, I was able to get a few bottles of magnums. Yeah, Muga Rosé in 1,5 L bottle, that’s a shocker! Beautifully packed in sexy cardboard suitcase-like box (fits 3 magnum bottles), it made me really, really happy.

Mr. Isaac Muga opened his first cellar in 1932. Through his hard work and devotion for a traditional winemaking, he was soon well accepted in the market. After his death in 1969, his sons Manuel and Isaac took over the management and winemaking of the winery.

Today, Bodegas Muga is the only winery left in Spain that uses only oak throughout the process of elaboration. Having their own cooperage and importing American and French oak directly, makes it possible.The family Muga owns estate of 96 acres (40 hectares) and purchases grapes from 50 different small growers in Rioja. Bodegas Muga receives consistently high ratings internationally for both their white and red wines.

Muga’s signature portfolio:

Muga Reserva
Muga Reserva Seleccion Especial
Prado Enea Gran Reserva Torre Muga
Muga Blanco
Muga Rosé (or Rosado) is released in late spring and makes it to American market usually around July.

As I said before, the wine is sought after and doesn’t sit on the shelves for long.It is made in a style known in Rioja as “clarete”. Wine is blended from white and red grapes, using Garnacha from cooler areas of Rioja. 20% of wine undergoes malolactic fermentation.

Tasting notes:
The familiar aroma reminding me of fresh raspberries, cherries or strawberries accompanies this light pink wine. On the palate it is crisp and fresh summer wine, with plenty of fruit flavors. As always, perfectly balanced with natural acidity.

Long, seductive finish. This wine never, ever disappointed me. So next year, as soon as I hear about its release, I will make sure to run for case. Because, I don’t want to miss my annual case again.

Dry – Off dry – Medium sweet – Sweet
Light – Medium – Full body
No oak – Aged in oak
Retail price: under $ 12.00 (for a regular, 750ml bottle)

Ideal food pairing:
Any kind of seafood… or sipping on its own