2006 Descendientes de J. Palacios Petalos del Bierzo

I believe in continuing education; therefore, whenever I run across an unfamiliar varietal on a wine list, I tend to order it. The Mencía varietal from northern Spain has been my most recent finding, which I discovered one night at Philadelphia’s Tinto. I had the 2006 Descendientes de J. Palacios Petalos del Bierzo, a wine so full of mystery and intensity that I kept uncovering new flavors. On the first sip it was mineral; the second released notes of herbs like basil and tarragon; and the third was something different altogether, dark red fruits and leather. While not widely available, this wine is worth searching out and can be enjoyed on its own or with your first grilled steak of the summer.

2006 Descendientes de J. Palacios Petalos del Bierzo, $22.99