La Bota de Amontillado 49 – Bota AR

I keep coming back to these – this is one I had open for a little while without finishing off. I wasn’t overwhelmed first time but have had such contrasting experiences with the 47 and 48 on a second attempt I thought this was worth another go. It is of course by Equipo Navazos and as many will already know it is a super old amontillado that labours under the burden of a 100 point Robert Parker score.

It is a deep reddish brown – more colour than you expect given the age and the black label etc.

The nose is powerful and challenging. At first it seems chemical and reminded me of almost a red wine. As I get into it I can pick out ginger (as in a whisky mac) cedar, resin and pine needles. It is reminiscent of really old leather bound books (trust me on this, I am a lawyer by training).

It has flavours of pine needles on the tongue too, and then other wood flavours, a really immensely woody taste to it. It is a gentler beast than I remember – less acidic and astringent – but still a beast. A lot of flavour but it is concentrated bitterness: it has the almost liquorice taste of black treacle, or caramel that has all burnt in the pan. Then again a really woody, tobacco taste fading to cigar ash, in fact.

It is unique and most likely historic, and challenging if nothing else.

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