• Simon Reilly

Life begins at 40 at Rekondo - Muga Prado Enea Gran Reserva, 1976

I jetted off to San Sebastián with my wife this weekend to celebrate my 40th birthday. Apart from the unbridled joy of lounging about on the beach for 3 days without our kids to disturb the peace, the clear highlight for me was a long lunch at Rekondo.

A bit of a pilgrimage for wine lovers, Rekondo is wine cellar first, restaurant second. It's almost as if the restaurant was created to provide something to eat with the treasure trove of wines in its vast cellars.

With more than 100,000 bottles to chose from on the 250 page wine list, help from the excellent sommeliers is a must.

I had it firmly in my head that I wanted to drink something from my birth year, 1976. On perusing the tome that is the wine list, I realised there were several options from 1976. I needed some help. Immediately the sommelier pointed me to the the Muga Prada Enea Gran Reserva. A snip at €75. I like a sommelier who makes decisions and gives advice so I ordered it.

Here's me looking at the wine list like a pig in shit....

Before tucking into the Rioja with our "Chuleta" steak with roasted peppers and chips, we needed something white to go with our starters. A local blood sausage called morcilla de urt for me and a prawn carpaccio for Mrs Wineloon. All the food was stunning by the way.

The sommelier suggested a Godello by Rafael Palacios. A deliciously mineral and citrusy wine, which worked very well as both an aperitif and with the quite different food we had. A delicious food friendly wine.

Now onto the main event...

It tasted young and delicious, like a good Burgundy, maybe a Chambolle. Light browny orange in colour.

The nose had lovely aromas of sweet berries and cherries. The sweetness of cherries continues on the palate with a bit of leather and polish. Really smooth with seamless tannins and nice acidity to finish. Not drying at all. Amazing!

The bottle hardly had any sediment at the end of the bottle. It really did not feel like an old wine and showed minimal signs of ageing. This is the end of the last glass...

A wine that will last for many years to come. Both in the bottle and in my memory. A wonderful experience.

#Rioja #Muga #Rekondo #SanSebastian #Basque #Chuleta