2010 Bodegas Balbas Ardal Reserva Selection Especial Ribera del Duero
I’m always skeptical when wineries proudly place stickers on their bottles to promote the high scores the wines have received by the mainstream wine ratings companies. Just the other week we tasted a bottle rated 93 points by one of these outlets, and it fell way below expectations for us.
This one, however, proudly stamped 94 points by Wine Spectator, is an outlier, a true gem that I am going to stock up on every chance I get.
Wine Spectator tastes blind, which lends a great deal more credibility to their ratings. That, combined with the fact that I tend to agree with them more often than not, gives them more credence in my book.
In the case of this Spanish blend from Ribera del Duero, I’d say they’ve hit the nail on the head, uncovering an amazing wine, and one that we are lucky enough to be able to score at Costco for only $20.
When I see Ribera del Duero, I usually guess 100% Tempranillo in the make up but this one actually included 20% Cabernet Sauvignon, which I think is what helped add to the depth and complexity. Being a 2010, this wine is ready to drink right now. Sure, you could age it for a few more years, but the degree to which it is going to change is likely marginal.
It was a little tight out of the bottle but showed early signs of a high caliber wine. An hour later from the decanter, this wine was right where I hoped it would be.
A nose that conveys quality, that is earthy and juicy; this wine is medium plus in body; flavors of spicy dark cherry, wild strawberry, plum with hints of a little leather and campfire towards the finish. Finishes dry and dusty, complete.
I really love the balance here. Everything is in order and it makes for a wine that would be awesome in almost any occasion. At $20, this one is hard to beat, so it will certainly be an addition to our Recommended Wines list.
For everyone out there looking for the highly regarded Kirkland Ribera, this wine may cost a little more, but it’s worth it for what is in my opinion one of the best buys in Costco wine in recent memory. Enjoy this one, and buy it while you can.
CostcoWineBlog.com Rating: 92 points
Costco item number: 1027766
Purchased at Costco in: Atlanta, GA (Kennesaw)