2011 Kirkland Signature Ribera del Duero Gran Reserva
I was first alerted to this exciting new arrival by a reader in Maryland last week, but a subsequent trip to Costcos near me turned up dry. This is the first Gran Reserva Ribera del Duero wine we’ve seen from Kirkland so I was the hunt, and finally found it last night.
On top of it just being a Kirkland Ribera, they had to send it over the top with the Gran Reserva designation, which I’ll explain in a moment. And they did it for $12.99 which is astonishing. I’d recommend red wine fans buy this up while it lasts because I imagine this one will go fast.
Quick geographic overview that’s important for understanding this wine. Ribera del Duero is an area in northern Spain known for producing excellent Tempranillo, which is the varietal that makes up 100% of what’s in this bottle. Ribera isn’t far from its better known neighbor, Rioja, with Toro on the other side – all of which produce excellent wines for the money.
A Gran Reserva designation is the highest classification in the Spanish system that mandates certain rules around how long the wine has been aged and how it’s been aged by the winery before its release.
I love this as essentially you’re buying a wine that’s ready to drink now that’s been stored in perfect conditions at the winery, ready to go at your kitchen table half way around the world from where these grapes were harvested six years ago. All for $13.
This wine was aged for 13 months in new French oak, then transferred to American oak for 25 months, before spending an additional 24 months in the bottle.
Definitely give this wine a decant for about an hour. It pours dark and opens up with powerful, spicy aromas; medium plus in body, soft and elegant as the tannins have started to mellow out; dark fruit flavor, blueberry and blackberry, more pepper and spice toward the finish, with dark chocolate and earthy notes.
This wine is a superb value, perhaps one of the best Kirkland bottles for the money we’ve found in some time. It’s big, rich and elegant all the same time.
NOTE: in the fine print on the back of the label you can see that this wine is produced by Bodegas Vina Solorca, a well known estate in Ribera del Duero, whose lesser wines (non Gran Reserva) cost more than this one.
CostcoWineBlog.com Rating: 90 points (easy addition to our Recommended wine list)
Costco item number: 1169328
Purchased at Costco in: Atlanta, GA