Back and tasty as ever in 2009, this Monastrell wine from the southeastern Spanish DO of Jumilla provides plenty of snappy dark fruit with a hint of licorice and minerals. It is one of our best selling imported reds, as well as oone of our best $8 and under values. A Best Buy, Wine Enthusiast: "Another fine Best Buy from a winery that knocks 'em out year after year. This Monastrell-Syrah blend delivers full, rustic aromas of tomato, baked berry and salsa. The palate is saucy and smooth, with blackberry flavors mixed with herbs and tomato. Textured, healthy, snappy and a good partner for full- flavored foods." (02/11) From Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar: "Opaque ruby. Scents of cherry pit and licorice, with floral and spice notes that come up with aeration. Bright and spicy in the mouth, offering gently sweet cassis, blackberry flavors and good spine. Dusty tannins add shape to a spicy, black-fruit finish. More serious than the organic version but an equally great value." (Nov/Dec 10) And according to Robert Parker's Wine Advocate: "The 2009 Luzon delivers aromas of sage, forest floor, spice box, and blueberry. With good volume, ripe flavors, and no hard edges, it will drink nicely over the next 3 years."