Alvaro Palacios is one of Spain's superstars, but though he grew up in Rioja, he made his name in the Priorat region. A few years ago, at his father's request, he took over his family's languishing Palacios Remondo estate in Rioja and brought it back to life. With stricter vineyard practices and skillful winemaking, he's turned the venerable estate around.
"Propriedad," made from a selection of the estate's best grapes, is a stunning Rioja. The style is modern, as warm and lush as Ava Gardner. And for the moment Palacios seems to be keeping the prices relatively reasonable.
Like all Riojas, this wine loves roasts and grilled red meat. But it also has enough finesse to work with more polished dishes, the kinds of things you'd normally pair with a Pinot Noir.
Price: About $25
Style: Warm and lush
Food it goes with: Roasts and grilled red meat, roasted birds.
Where you find it: Beverage Warehouse in Marina del Rey, (310) 306-2822; Mel & Rose Liquor & Deli, (323) 655-5557; Vendome Liquors in Beverly Hills, (310) 276-9463; Wine Exchange in Orange, (714) 974-1454; (800) 76WINEX; also directly from the importer, the Rare Wine Co. in Sonoma, (707) 996-4484, and at www.rarewine co.com.