The Faustino legacy begins in 1861 when Eleuterio Martinez Arzok settled in Oyón, Spain and bought the town’s manor house and vineyards. The family worked for many years to make the land productive and begin producing wine. He tends to the vineyards with his son, Faustino, who, by 1920, begins laying the foundation for a modern-minded wine brand. The company is known by other names for many years and is finally named Faustino in 1960 when Faustino’s son, now a 3rd generation Faustino, names the brand after his father. It is during this time that they begin exporting and shipping to other countries. In 1964 the iconic bottle, which still exists today, is created. Since then, it’s been known as one of the most admired brands of Spanish wine made under the highest standards. They’ve sold 76 million bottles of wine over the past 50 years.
Wine of the Month: Faustino I Gran Reserva Rioja
Its color is cherry red developing into an intense ruby color. The aromas are sweet and warm with ripe fruit, notes of vanilla and sensations of cinnamon, blond tobacco and cocoa. The mouthfeel is elegant and structured with good acidity. A sweet and surprising finish for a Rioja Gran Reserva. There is an aftertaste of the blend of very ripe fruit, vanilla and roasted notes.
Faustino I Gran Reserva Rioja is made from a blend of Tempranillo, Graciano and Mazuelo grapes and is aged in French and American oak barrels for 26 months. Tempranillo is the most prolific grape in Spain. It is considered a black grape because of its dark skin and dark red interior. It produces wines that are vibrant with bold flavors. Combined with Graciano, which provides a very lively color and high acidity and Mazuelo which is abundant in tannins, the three of these grapes become the perfect combination for long aging wines.
Tempranillo pairs well with the rich flavors found in Spanish cheese and cured meats. It also matches with many types of red meat, mushrooms and stews.
Marinated Manchego Cheese
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
4 cloves garlic, peeled
1 small orange, halved and sliced thin
1 sprig rosemary
1 bay leaf
Sea Salt, for sprinkling
1/2 lb Manchego Cheese, sliced or cubed
Add oil to a small saucepan over medium heat. Add the garlic and orange slices. Cook until garlic becomes golden, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat and add rosemary and bay leaf. Sprinkle with salt and let cool.
Arrange cheese in a serving dish. Remove garlic from the oil and discard. Pull the leaves off the rosemary and scatter them over the cheese. Tuck the orange slices between the cheese and pour the oil over the cheese. Garnish with the bay leaf. Cover and chill for at least 6 hours or overnight. Can be made 2 days in advance.