Kathy’s Pick: 2014 Rio Madre Rioja Graciano, $11.99

Graciano is thought to be native to the Rioja region of Spain. The vines are low yielding and susceptible to mildew, so there are not as many vineyards that devote a lot of acreage to the variety. But recently there has been more interest in cultivating Graciano and producing 100 percent varietal wines. One of my favorites is from a Washington winery, Idilico. They produce  a 100 percent Graciano that is rich with structure, firm tannins and ripe, dark fruit. However, as that one retails for $27.00, the Rio Madre is a great alternative for everyday consumption. Here is what Vinous wrote about it: "Brilliant violet color. Intensely perfumed dark berry and floral pastille scents, along with suggestions of anise, violet and pipe tobacco. Sweet and expansive on the palate, offering sappy black and blue fruit flavors that put on weight with air. Shows very good energy and power on the long, gently tannic finish, leaving behind notes of blueberry and peppery spices. 90 Pts."