Wine of the Week: 2005 Marques de Murrieta Rioja ‘Reserva’

It’s nice when you can drink a Rioja with a little age on it. I just tried the 2005 Reserve from Marques de Murrieta. That extra bit of time in the bottle makes for such delicious drinking. A blend of 84 percent Tempranillo with 13 percent Garnacha and 3 percent Mazuelo, the wine tastes of earth and red plums, with tannins and acidity in perfect balance. And $25 or less for an 8-year-old wine is a wonderful buy, especially for one that is so food-friendly.

Break out some jamon or salumi as part of a cured meats spread. Serve it with paella or an earthy dish of beans braised with lamb shanks or sausages.

Region: Rioja, Spain

Price: About $24

Style: Rich and earthy

What it goes with: Ham and other cured meats, roasts, braised beans with sausages

— By McClatchy-Tribune