Tag Archive: Spanish wine


Menade “M” Verdejo 2014

Menade “M” Verdejo 2014 is a deliciously herbacious organic white wine from Rueda Valladolid Spain. I’m not normally a fan of whites, but with all the heavy red meat dishes, and stews of fall, white wines can be very refreshing. Verdejo opens with super green grassy notes, fresh green herbs like basil and taragon, green apples, artichokes, lime zest and white volcanic stone. This wine finishes with a brilliant little acid kick that melts away in my mouth that would make a perfect chaser to any fall pork dis, or a roasted, bacon wrapped chicken breast.

Cune Rioja Gran Reserva 2010

This little Spanish wine came to me off of our damaged label shelf, a shelf at work that we put wines we can’t sell because of damaged packaging. Stores won’t sell them, because they won’t be able to get a full price. This Gran Reserva is a blend, with the main grape being tempranillo. It’s aged 24 months in French and American Oak, and then another 36 in the bottle.

The nose is a delicious baking spice, red fruit laugh. It’s full of raspberries, Flathead cherries, and bold oak vanilla toast flavors. The finish is a blend of oak and spice, with an acid kick that cleanses the palate. For as easygoing as this wine actually is, Cune does have quite a few surprising little nuances.

I’m shocked and pleased.

Vina Gormaz Joven 2013

This delightful estate bottled Tempranillo from Ribera del Duero Spain comes from 30 year old vines, at an altitude of 900 meters. In the glass, there is light shining through the wine to create lovely patterns on a white table, however, there is a little rim variation, with slightly visible sediment. Vina Gormaz is a much lighter tempranillo than the Senda 66. It’s nose is rich, with luscious blueberries, tart raspberries, strawberries, and meaty briny spice, edged with cinnamon and charcuterie meat. Vina Gormaz’s Joven Tempranillo is almost a course unto itself, with fruity and meaty flavors and aromas. However, I do recommend pairing it with creamy chevre on crackers or salmon patee’.

I’m currently studying Spanish wines. Castano Monastrell 2013 comes from the Yecla DO in Spain. This wine is lighter than the Senda 66, but does look a little like cherry cider, with some visual rim variation.

Castano Monastrell carries aromas of amazingly bright red cherries, fresh and vinegar, a cherry reduction sauce with sage, cherry candy, violets, lavender, cola, and bright strawberries. The taste matches the aroma. It’s a delicious fruit bomb garnished with a wild herb finish.

This wine would pair well with vanilla ice cream, grilled meats and veggies. I had this wine with maple spice braised steak and potatoes. It was a perfect foil for the maple spice.

Castillo de Monseran is a delicious Spanish Garnacha, that shows deep purple in the glass. Being a blending grape, I wasn’t expecting Garnacha to be anything too spectacular, but rather a juicy, flabby, but pleasing time-passer. I was pleasantly surprised to find that Spanish Garnacha (instead of a Grenache) is meaty and rich with black fruits, cherries, blackberries just prepared for preserves, and luscious dark strawberries. This wine has a heady, heavily perfumed nose of black raspberries, and blueberries. The finish of Castillo de Monseran is rich but outlined in hickory smoke. I really enjoyed this little wine. While it isn’t a cathedral, or a forest hike, it is certainly a night in with a warm blanket and a pair of comfy socks.

Picos del Montgo 2009

Picos del Montgo 2009 is an old vine Grenacha from Carinena Spain. This wine is interesting because it’s so concentrated. This wine is bubbling over with raisinated flavors and scents- it’s like an oloroso sherry, great on the nose, and (unfortunately) in my experience, lacking in body. Though, I had heard someone say that this just leaves room for food. I may reisit this again sometime, with a nice venison steak, or a burger.

Crucillon 2009

Crucillon 2009 is a deliciously simple little garnache from the Bodegas Aragonesas in Spain. It whispers into a crescendo of bright red cranberries, tart raspberries, and pomegranates. It echoes of preserve cherries with receding waves of red fruit. Beautiful and simple.

El Vinculo Tinto Crianza 2009

This crianza from La Mancha Spain is a reticent beauty, laced with prunes, figs, old roses, and is very meaty. It’s reticent at first, as though ascending  a spiral staircase from a castle in a dress of reddish brown silk as low Bach plays, inviting her up to join the dance. El Vinculo has a stunning black fruit finish, that leaves you wanting just one more dance.

Jumilla Panarroz 2011

Jumilla’s Panarroz 2011 red blend from Spain is a delicious assortment of Monastrell, syrah, and garnacha. This young wine is perfect for fall, with aromas of mulch, brown wet leaves, black cherry juice that runs down your chin when you stuff your mouth full of them, and gushes with blackberries and blueberries. This wine has cinnamon and nutmeg brush strokes, hinting at the pies to come as the weather turns colder, with mild spice, a full, supple body, and a delightfully long lasting finish that both refreshes and whets the appetite.

Panarroz

Antano Crianza 2008

antano crianzThe Antano Crianza from 2008 is a excellent value blend. The blend is 85% Tempranillo, 10% Graciano, and 5% Mazuelo. As a Crianza, it’s aged two years in oak casks before being released for consumption. Aging adds a depth and complexity that I find surprising for just two years. This Spanish beauty comes from the makers, Garcia and Carrion in the Rioja Region of Spain.

This deep youth presents as ruby in color with slight rim variation. It is fruit forward, with raspberries, red apple skin, jammy baked strawberries, tinted with spice box and bark. It’s big and juicy, and easy to drink with or without food. It’s velvety, opening to black and red currants in the glass, followed by tart unsweetened pie cherries. The Crianza is delightfully aromatic, with something nostalgic about the flavor and scents, finishing with deep plum juice tartness as it fades.

There were two other Antano wines that were brought to our store at the same time as this Crianza. The first was an unaged Tempranillo, which was more fruit forward, youthful, and though delightful, not at all complex. The other was a Reserva, which was aged for 3 years. I had not had the pleasure of tasting this one, though if the 2008 is any indicator, this 2007 Reserva is a pleaser on wheels.