Posts Tagged ‘Valdeorras’

Two must-try Spanish wines from Rafael Palacios and Command G

February 3, 2015 1 comment

We recently took a break from tasting Italian wine by trying a pair of new Spanish wines.   The 2013 Rafael Palacios, Louro do Bolo, Godello, Valdeorras features a rich color that is matched by the flavors in the mouth. The combination of yellow fruit, minerals, and lively acidity will make this more luxurious wine appeal to many people.  It is great right now but should hit its peak next year.  Command G (G for Garnacha) is the effort of Fernando Garcia (Bodega Maranones), Daniel Gomez Jimenez-Landi (Bodegas Jimenez-Landi), and Marc Isart (Bodegas Bernabeleva).  Their wines are meant to capture the differences of individual parcels of old-vine Garnacha.  Since I have tasted only one of these wines I cannot speak to these differences but I can state the 2013 Command G, La Bruja de Rozas, Madrid is incredibly tasty!  This is elegant and confident Garnacha that needs half a year of age to relax.  I suggest you buy a couple bottles of each wine.  They will hold up quite fine if you take a few days to drink them up.  These wines are available at MacArthur Beverages.


2013 Rafael Palacios, Louro do Bolo, Godello, Valdeorras – $19
Imported by Eric Solomon/European Cellars.  This wine is a blend of 92% Godello and 8% Teixadura that was fermented and matured in oak foudre.   Alcohol 13.5%.  The golden yellow color makes way to rich, yellow fruit that is textured and immediately lively from the acidity.  The wine turns creamier in the middle picking up stones and toast notes in the finish.  *** Now-2017.


2013 Command G, La Bruja de Rozas, Madrid – $25
Imported by Eric Solomon/European Cellars.  This wine is 100% Garnacha sourced from 50-80 year old vines on granite soils at 850m.  It was fermented with indigenous yeasts in a mixture of wooden barrels and vats followed by aging for five months in different sized barrels.  Alcohol 14.5%.  The low-lying yet ticklish nose offers root beer like aromas.  In the mouth the wine is lively on the tongue tip from acidity with cinnamon and root-beer like notes supported by acidity as the flavors fill the mouth.  The wine is light in a sense with the presence of structure.  There are nice, red fruit and strawberry flavors that take on texture with air.  ***(*) 2015-2022.


Four Diverse Wines From Spain

February 27, 2014 Leave a comment

This quick post features four interesting and diverse Spanish wines.  The 2009 CUNE, Vina Real, Rioja is a great bargain in cellar-worthy wine.  The cinnamon spice flavor was particularly interesting.  Tasted over three nights this wine will undoubtedly age longer than I expect.   Completely opposite in flavor, the 2012 Ritme Celler, Ritme, Priorat offers ample flavors of sweet fruit and wood.  By sweet I do not mean residual sugar.  This generous wine exudes its warm origins and could use a few months to come together.  At that point you should pour away!  From very old vines the 2011 Raul Perez, Vico, Bierzo is in a subtle state right now.  The OLE website suggests this my age for 20 years and while I cannot predict that far ahead, I would certainly cellar it a year or two before trying.  Finally, the 2010 Bodegas Santa Marta, Viñaredo Sousón, Barrica Seleccion, Valdeorras is made from  Sousón.  This indigenous variety is not longer that popular so not much is produced.  In fact, this is the first time I am aware of drinking a wine made from it.   It leans towards black fruit flavors with plenty of acidity along with attractive texture and minerals.  Like the CUNE and Raul Perez this is best left in the cellar.  The Viñaredo was purchased at Despaña Vino y Mas and the rest at MacArthur Beverages.


2009 CUNE, Vina Real, Rioja – $15
Imported by Europvin.  This wine is 90% Tempranillo and 10% Graciano, Garnacha and Mazuel which was aged for 12 months in French and American oak.  Alcohol 13.5%.  The nose was a little deep and meaty but remained tight with some scented ripe blue fruit and wood escaping.  There was acidity within the core of dense red and blue fruit.  The slightly tart middle made way to black fruit and minerals in the finish.  This was well-integrated, not firm but lithe with slightly salivating acidity.  It had an interesting cinnamon spice note.  This solid wine has moderate structure for the cellar.  **(*) 2016-2026.


2012 Ritme Celler, Ritme, Priorat – $22
Imported by Steve Miles Selections.  This wine is a blend of 70% Carinyena and 30% Garnatxa which was aged for 10 months in French oak barrels.  Alcohol 15%.  In the mouth the wine was round and tart before sweet fruit came out.  The flavors were rather expansive with a wood note.  With air the ripe and tart fruit became defined by red and strawberry flavors.  The acidity came out playing a supportive role to the moderately-sized, ripe and sweet tannins.  This has some structure for age.  **(*) 2015-2022.


2011 Raul Perez, Vico, Bierzo – $25
Imported by OLE Imports.  This wine is 100% Mencia sourced from vines planted in 1889 and 1924 which was aged for nine months in used French oak.  Alcohol 13.5%.  The high toned aromas of red fruit mixed with a little meat.  In the mouth the red fruit was firm with some blue fruit notes and plenty of acidity.  There was subtle ripeness and subtle weight.  With air it became a little juicy with ripe cranberry, red fruit flavors.  *** 2015-2020.


2010 Bodegas Santa Marta, Viñaredo Sousón, Barrica Seleccion, Valdeorras – $40
Imported by Peninsula Wines.  This wine is 100% Sousón sourced from 35+ year old vines on slate soils which was aged for 6+ months in French and American oak.  Alcohol 13%.  The nose was floral with black fruit. In the mouth were tart red and black fruit flavors which became blacker and picked up mineral notes.  The tannins mixed in well with plenty of acidity.  This tangy wine had lots of texture, became a little savory, and picked up drying stone flavors.  *** 2016-2024.


White and Red Spanish Wines

September 3, 2013 Leave a comment

Both the 2011 Bodegas Rafael Palacios, Sabrego, Godello and the 2012 Gessami, Gramona are distinctive and well-priced.  If you do not drink that much Spanish white wine then try both of these.  You will have just as much fun with the new experience as you will finishing the bottles.  The 2011 Bodegas y Vinedos Ponce, P.F is made from very old-vine Bobal which are ungrafted.  Thus P.F stands for Pie Franco.  When I first cut the capsule then pulled the cork I could see leakage through a defect in the cork. Fortunately the wine was sound, enjoyable on the first night and better on the second night.  If you enjoy the vigor of a young Southern Rhone then you will like this wine.  The 2010 Sao del Coster, S is a young, robust wine which really should be cellared for a year or two.  It is reasonably priced for Priorat.  You cannot go wrong by trying any of these wines.  The white wines were purchased at MacArthur Beverages and the red wines at Chambers Street Wines.


2011 Bodegas Rafael Palacios, Sabrego, Godello, Valdeorras – $15
Imported by Eric Solomon/European Cellars.  This wine is 100% Godella sourced from vines on granite soils which was fermented and aged in stainless steel. Alcohol 13%.  The nose was textured with herbs, smoke, and stones.  It smelled good and young.  In the mouth there was somewhat weighty yellow fruit, a citrus bit then more stones, lots of stones.  There was a tangy quality which made it attractive to drink again.  Toward the middle it took on puckering acidity and picked up weight in the end.  This clear, fresh wine had a little ripe spice in the aftertaste.  *** Now-2015.


2012 Gessami, Gramona, Penedes – $16
Imported by Eric Solomon/European Cellars.  This wine is a blend of two varieties of Moscatal, Sauvignon Blanc, and Gewurztraminer.  Alcohol 11.5%.  The nose bore tropical floral aromas with minerals. Good nose.  In the mouth there was some roundness and weight on the tongue then tangy on the tongue tip with acidity becoming integrated.  There were hints of pebbly texture, a little drier in nature then expansive with dry stones.  There was a good aftertaste.  Nice character.  *** Now-2014.


2011 Bodegas y Vinedos Ponce, P.F, Manchuela –  $25
Imported by T. Edwards Wines.  This wine is 100% Bobal sourced from 60-95 year old ungrafted vines.  The fruit was whole-cluster fermented then underwent malolactic fermentation and aging for 16-18 months in cask.  Alcohol 14%.  The nose was of mixed berries eventually developing a pretty, violet-like aroma.  In the mouth there were concentrated, extracted flavors with a little grip and nice, salivating acidity.  There was initial texture on the tongue followed by an elegant middle then spiced, drying, and textured tannins.  The grip returned in the finish with a rugged, youthful Southern Rhone-like personality.  **(*) 2014-2021.


2010 Sao del Coster, S, Priorat – $23
Imported by T Elenteny Wine Imports.  This wine is a blend of 30% Grenache, 30% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot, and 10% Syrah fermented with indigenous yeasts in stainless steel then aged on the lees. Alcohol 15%.  The nose was young and robust.  The wine was initially prickly on the tongue with Grenache notes coming out.  The flavors were rather youthful with robust, red fruit, dried herbs, and a robust core.  It needs time to expand, eventually developing a cherry flavor.  There were youthful, drying tannins on the gums and a little black minerally bit.  **(*) 2015-2023.


Mencia Madness

December 5, 2012 Leave a comment

Phil recommended these two Spanish wines made from Mencia.  Both of these are really good wines at $15-$20 per bottle.  You should really try them both.  They exhibit strong minerality along with a savory or salty profile.  You can just taste all of the goodness these older vines have taken up through their roots.   These wines are available from MacArthur Beverages.


2010 Ladera Sagrada, A Portela, Mencia, Valdeorras – $15
Imported by OLE.  This wine is 100% Mencia sourced from vines planted in 1976 on granite and slate soils.  It was fermented and aged in stainless steel.  Alcohol 13%.  The color was a light to medium ruby with a little garnet.  The light to medium strength nose bore aromas of cranberry and yeast.  On the second night there were lifted aromas of darker red fruit which powered through.  In the mouth the flavors were salty with bright red fruit which had weight.  The acidity hit the sides of the tongue then there was a riper hint of red and black fruit at the finish.  This shows good complexity as flavors of cinnamon, minerals, and black fruit leave the sides of the tongue.  *** Now-2017.


2009 Luna Beberide, Finca La Cuesta, Mencia, Bierzo – $19
Imported by Grapes of Spain.  This wine is 100% Mencia sourced from 60+ year old vines at 600-750 meters on soils of calcareus clay with slate.  It was aged for 12 months in French oak barrels.  Alcohol 14%.  The color is a medium ruby with depth.  The light nose is complex with wet earth and stones.  In the mouth this is a serious wine with savory, focused flavors then spiced and spicy red and black fruit.  Towards the finish racy and salty minerals come out before blacker fruit and a little spicy kick is left in the mouth.  It is lighter in the finish and almost peppery.  This needs some age but you can drink it now with air.  *** 2014-2019.