- The wines
- Information on the wines
- Member’s wines ratings
PRESENTER: Alfonso Sánchez
TYPE : Open
Mario Aguilar, Juan Luis Colaiacovo, Orlando Mason, Italo Mirkow, Orlando Reos, Alfonso Sánchez, Jairo Sánchez, Miguel Segovia
This presentation includes four Spanish appellations that produce excellent wines but with markedly different character and grape varieties. The emphasis of this tasting is on assessing the wines individually on its own merits and character rather than comparing them as they are all highly rated but quite different.
- 2014 La Vizcaina Las Gundiñas Tinto -Bierzo
- 2005 Baronia del Montsant Clos Englora – Montsant
- 2013 Mas Doix Salanques – Priorat
- 2013 Liberalia Toro Cinco – Toro
- 2010 Ferrer Bobet Vinyes Velles – Priorat
- Grilled sausage with peppers
- Mushrooms risotto
- Veal ravioli w/ touch of aurora sauce
- Grilled steak in pepper sauce and roasted vegetables
- Dessert and/or coffee
INFORMATION ON THE WINES
(All information obtained and condensed from several Internet articles.)
2014 La Vizcaina Las Gundiñas Tinto – Toro
The Wine: A blend of mostly Mencia with Bastardo (Trousseau), Garnacha Tintorera (Alicante Bouschet) and Dona Blanca. Mencia is a red-wine grape native to the northwest of Spain. It is most commonly associated with the red wines of Bierzo, which were once light and astringent but, since the discovery of low-yielding vines planted on poor soils high on the hills, have become more intense and concentrated, attracting the attention of the wine-drinking world. Mencia wines tend to exhibit earthy, vegetal characters with berry nuances and stony minerality.
Vinous / Antonio Galloni Opaque ruby. Aromas of ripe dark berries, violet, peppery spices and woodsmoke, with a hint of cola in the background. Sweet, broad and expansive in the mouth, offering sappy blackberry, licorice, cola and floral pastille flavors and a touch of bitter chocolate. The violet quality carries strongly though the persistent, smoke-tinged finish, which features youthful tannins and lingering spiciness.
- Village: Valtuille de Abajo
- Vineyard: Las Gundiñas
- Year of plantation: 1910
- Hectares: 2.2
- Altitude: 510 meters ASL
- Soil: Clay and limestone with lots of depth
- Orientation: East
- Plant density: 3800 vines / hectare
- Varieties: Mostly Mencía with Bastardo (Trousseau), Garnacha Tintorera (Alicante Bouschet) and Doña Blanca
- Elaboration: Whole cluster fermentation in large oak vats. 30-60 day maceration followed by one year of aging in used 225-liter barrels. Bottled without fining or filtration.
The Winery: La Vizcaina is a relatively new project from Raul Perez that explores the hillside crus around his hometown of Vatuille de Abajo. Four reds and one white are produced under the name, all from vines with over fifty years of average age. Though all the red wines Raul produces in the Bierzo D.O. are labelled as 100% Mencía, they all in fact contain significant quantities of other local grapes.
Raul Perez is one of the current superstars of Spanish wine, with consultancies and projects all over the country. His family owns Castro Ventosa in Bierzo where he has been making wine since his teenage years, but recently he has embarked on his own projects in Bierzo, Monterrei, Rías Baixas and the stunning Ribeira Sacra. His wines are unique and special, but volumes are very tiny, so we haven’t listed them all here. If you are interested please ask us about availability.
The rich varietal diversity found in Galicia is due in large part to the famous Camino de Santiago, a pilgrimage to the tomb of Saint James in the town of Santiago de Compostela, the earliest references to which date back to the 9th century. The monks who made the journey would often carry vine cuttings from their home regions in their packs to offer as gifts to the Spanish monasteries that would put them up along the way. This is certainly the explanation for the preponderance of Trousseau found throughout northwestern Spain.
2005 Baronia del Montsant Clos Englora – Montsant
The Wine: The Clos Englora’s name comes from about one of the emblematic tops of the Montsant’s range, which tops highs more than 1000 mts above sea level. Our logotype is an abstract and personal representation of the mentioned top. The AV14 nomenclature means that the grapes we have used come from “aged vineyards”, and the number 14, is approximately the time that wine remains in barrels.
The wine is blend of Red Grenache (37%), Carignan (21%), Merlot (14%), Cabernet Sauvignon (12%), Syrah (8%), Cabernet Franc (4%), Monastrell (2%) and Tempranillo (2%).
RP: Wine Advocate-Montsant, Spain- “It offers up a perfume of crushed stone, smoke, espresso, Asian spices, black cherry, and blackberry leading to a rich, opulent, layered wine with tons of fruit, plenty of spice…
The Winery: In Montsant area we principally elaborate red wine, and among the different varieties we can point up Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Merlot, Ull de Llebre (Tempranillo), Samsó (cariñena) and purple Garnacha. We have to mention the velvety, complex and meaty characteristics of these wines, which predispose them to a long maturing in wood.
Among the varieties used for the elaboration of white vines, we can point out the white Garnacha which produces aromatic and silky wines.
There are few hectares of vineyards under this mark of origin. The average is about 2,500 stocks of vine per hectare and they produce an average of 2 kg. per stock.
The characteristic orography of the region, with sharp slopes, makes difficult and hard the work of the farmers, but the fruits that grow have a unique personality.
The grounds that form the region of Priorat come from a first extract of sediments formed during the Palaeozoic. Later, during the Mesozoic, this first disposition was followed by a series of violent granite eruptions, which became the base of the present shape of the region. The granite transformed the Palaeozoic sediments into the typical “licorelles” (zones of slaty aspect, of dark colour) and “codols” (rolling stones).
There is a Mediterranean weather that is slightly changed by the common northeastern winds. The temperature is moderate, with an annual average of 16º C. In the cold season, frosts are strange and there is an average of three days of snow per year. The rainy days are of 500 mm per year, and the daily sunshine average is of 7.3 hours.
Read more about here: http://www.baronia-m.com/lliure/null/1?lang=en
2013 Mas Doix Salanques – Priorat
Wine Spectator: This vibrant red offers lively flavors of black cherry, plum, cola and mineral, set in a thick texture supported by firm tannins and orange peel acidity. Shows an alluring balance of power and polish. Drink now through 2023.
The Winery: Mas Doix is in the Priorat D.O.Q. See Technical Note below). The Celler Mas Doix was created by the Doix and Llagostera families in 1998. It is the reinitiation of a tradition that began in 1850. The gold medal obtained in the Universal Exhibition of Barcelona in 1888 and the silver medal won in the Universal Exhibition of Paris in 1878 remind the Doix family of the passion with which Juan Extrems Doix, Juan Doix’s grandfather, used long ago to look after the vineyards and produce his wines.
The phylloxera outbreak did not mean the end of the family’s vineyards. They were replanted with the Garnacha and Carinena varieties, native to the Priorat region, thereby maintaining the growth of the vineyards while the production was sent to the cooperative in Poboleda until it was able to be produced in Mas Doix’s winery. Nowadays, the family labors with love and passion for the fruit grown in their hundred-year-old vineyards so they can produce great wines.
Priorat is probably the most rugged, hardscrabble wine region anywhere. The soil, if you can call it that, is basically decomposed slate and schist, what the locals call llicorella. It is relatively acidic with very little organic material (2%), but it offers incredible drainage and is porous enough to allow the roots of the grapevines to reach deeper than just about anyplace else on earth.
These flat, easily breakable deeply copper coloured stones are where the vine roots delve in search of water and nutrients. It is these soils which are recognised as giving Priorat wines their greatest virtues. It is the land of “llicorella” , which quickly changes from the gently undulating mountain slopes to abrupt cliff faces where an observer always poses the question as to how on earth they even dared to plant vineyards here! Born of the soil and the region’s specific climate, vines planted here tend to suffer and as a result harvest yields are very low – at less than 1 kg per plant on average. This however means that the wines produced in this area have a very unique personality .
Read more here: http://www.masdoix.com/
2010 Ferrer Bobet Vinyes Velles – Priorat
Parker: “The 2010 Vinyes Velles was taken from barrel and comes from a cooler growing season than 2009, hence its greater sense of restraint and femininity. It displays clean, pure cassis, blueberry and violet aromas that blossom with continued aeration. The palate is understated on the entry and displays filigree tannins, while the texture really caresses the mouth – silky smooth and beautifully poised towards the finish. This is very refined, cool microclimate Priorat winemaking. Drink 2016-2025+.”
The Winery: Ferrer Bobet is located in the Porrera region. Porrera is one of the coolest parts of the Priorat, thanks largely to the marked influence of northeasterly winds, with a subtle moderating effect from the Mediterranean, and its topography, characterized by some of the highest and steepest vineyards in the appellation. These factors combine to create strong temperature variations between night and day which guarantee optimal phenolic ripening and the preservation of acidity, freshness and aromas. Likewise, its multiple aspects create a rich diversity of mesoclimates and offer the opportunity to create wines of particular complexity and depth.
At Ferrer Bobet, all of this is combined with almost exclusively slate soils, known locally as llicorella, which are a feature of only the top vineyards in the Priorat and which play such a key part in the unique personality of these wines.
To date we have used hundred-year-old Carinyena and Garnatxa Negra vines from exceptional vineyards which benefit from all of these qualities and with whose owners we share longstanding ties of friendship, esteem and respect. Ferrer Bobet’s own vineyards were planted near the winery in 2004 and 2005 with Carinyena, Garnatxa Negra, Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon, Viognier and Roussane. These vines stand on slopes and terraces which were carefully selected after exhaustive edaphological and adaptability studies. For each variety, we only use low vigour rootstocks and clones, aiming for perfectly balanced vines. The grapes from these vineyards, together with other exceptional young vines from around Porrera, will finally see the light of day in 2015 with the release of our third wine, Ferrer Bobet.
Of the estate’s seventy hectares, only fifteen have been planted, in line with our respect for the biodiversity of this unique countryside. And there is one more feature which is absolutely fundamental for us: strictly organic viticulture which completely excludes the use of insecticides and herbicides.
Read more here: http://www.ferrerbobet.com/inicio-en.html
2013 Liberalia Toro Cinco – Toro
The Wine: Wine Advocate-Toro, Castilla Leon, Spain- “…sourced from older vines and spent 19 months in new French oak. Purple/black in color, it gives up a nose of toasty new oak, graphite, lavender, espresso, tapenade, and blackberry. Jam-packed on the palate…”
The Winery: There is little information about this winery. Juan Antonio Fernandez acquired the winery in 1996 and started wine production in 200. Vineyards are all located in Toro in several villages platen with vines between 30 and 100 years old. (See technical note below for information about the Toro DO).
Read more here (in Spanish): http://www.liberalia.es/
VINOTABLES RATINGS FOR THIS TASTING: (TBA)
- 2014 La Vizcaina Las Gundinas Tinto – Bierzo – Very Good
- 2005 Baronia del Monsant Clos Englora – Monsant – Excellent
- 2013 Mas Doix Salanques – Priorat – Excellent
- 2010 Ferrer Bobet Vinyes Velles – Priorat – Excellent
- 2013 Liberalia Toro Cinco – Toro – Very Good
View full evaluation here:Summary of Tasting Scores meeting 59 Spain
Best Rated Wine: 2010 Ferrer Bobet Vinyes Velles – Priorat
Best Buy: 2005 Baronia del Monsant Clos Englora – Monsant
View full evaluation here: Summary of Tasting Scores meeting 59 Spain
Bierzo. (from Wine Searcher) Bierzo was accorded DO status in 1989 and in the past few years has experienced a surge in popularity thanks to the high-profile winemaker Alvaro Palacios of Priorat fame establishing vineyards there.
Bierzo’s proximity to the Atlantic Ocean has a profound effect on its overall climate, with average temperatures during the growing season much cooler than in Castilla y Leon’s more inland areas, making it rather mild. Average rainfall is around 28 inches (720mm). Nevertheless, the Cordillera Cantábricamountain range in the north provides the vineyards with adequate shelter, ensuring that the local Mencia grapes achieve optimum ripeness to produce lively, fruity and often intense red wines. Like many other Spanish wines, these are categorized by the length of their maturation (including the time spent in oak barrels). Garnacha is another important red grape variety here and is primarily used in blends.
Bierzo’s soil is different from that found in other parts of Castilla y Leon in that it contains a predominance of slate and granite. This favors the Mencia vines and helps them to produce wines with a distinct mineral character. The wines tend to be lighter in terms of alcohol and more refreshing than those from other parts of Castilla y León.
White wines are also produced in Bierzo, predominantly from Dona Blanca, Godello(Verdelho) and Palomino grapes. Rosé wines may also be produced, although a minimum of 50 percent Mencia is required.
The titles Crianza and Reserva may be added to wines that meet certain criteria. Crianza wines from Bierzo must be aged for a minimum of two years, with six months in oak barrels of a capacity of less than 264 gallons (1000 liters). Red Reserva wines must spend 12 months in oak barrels and 24 months in bottle, a total of three years.
Toro. (from Wine Searcher) Toro is a wine region in Castilla y Leon, north-western Spain, known for its powerful red wines made from Tempranillo. It is named for the town of Toro, an ancient settlement located on the Duero River (which bisects the region’s northern half) just 40 miles (65km) east of the Portuguese border. The Spanish word toro means ‘bull’, and while it is unclear precisely how the town’s name came about, the bull is nonetheless a fitting symbol for robust, red Toro wines.
In terms of grape varieties, Tinta de Toro (the local form of Tempranillo) is by far the dominant grape variety in Toro. A tiny amount of Garnacha is also grown, mostly for use in Toro Rosado (the region’s rosé wine), alongside small quantities of Malvasia Blanca and Verdejofor use in white Toro Blanco.
Toro’s climate is decidedly continental, just like the other wine regions of the Castilian plateau (neighboring Rueda, Cigales and Ribera del Duero). This means hot, dry summers followed by cold, harsh winters. Although the vast expanses of the Atlantic Ocean lie both to the north and west, Toro’s vineyards are deprived of any significant maritime influence by the Cordillera Cantábrica, the mountain range that separates Castilla y Leon from Spain’s north coast. Temperatures here range from 12F to 97F (–11C to 36C), and the annual rainfall average is very low – just 14in (350mm). The Duero River provides a much-needed source of water, and vineyards stray very little from its path.
Altitude plays an important role in Toro’s terroir. The region lies at the very heart of Castilla y Leon, on the vast, high plateau that separates the Cordillera Cantábrica and Sistema Central mountain ranges. Most Toro vineyards sit at altitudes between 2000ft (600m) and 2800ft (850m) above sea level, which helps to cool the climate slightly; air temperature drops about 1.1F/0.6C with every 330ft/100m of altitude.
High daytime temperatures, low rainfall and abundant sunshine combine to create powerful, high-alcohol wines. If left unchecked, Toro’s Tempranillo grapes would ripen with very high potential alcohol, resulting in wines of up to 16% alcohol by volume (ABV). Local wine laws (as administered by the Consejo Regulador de Toro) impose an upper limit of 15% ABV, but in practice most producers try to keep alcohol levels below 13.5% in order to keep the wines approachable and balanced. Toro’s red wines may be labeled with terms such as Joven, Crianza, Reserva and Gran Reserva . These indicate how long a wine is aged before commercial release.
Toro’s obvious potential as a wine region has encouraged wine producers from other regions (both Spanish and foreign) to establish wineries there. Prominent among these are Numanthia-Termes, Vega Sicilia Pintia, Bodegas Mauro (Eduardo Garcia) and Campo Elíseo (Michel Rolland and Francois Lurton). This increasing interest has helped to rejuvenate the Toro region and its wines – an effect which has spilled over into other parts of Castilla y Leon.
Priorat. Priorat is a small, mountainous region to be found nestled in the centre of the counties of the Tarragona province in North-Eastern Spain which is also Southern Catalonia.
A difficult terrain, equally difficult to work, a landscape of intriguing angles. From the highest of hills, the Priorat appears to be a sea of dark stone waves, just a short distance away from the true sea, the Mediterranean. The land is surrounded by higher mountain ranges, which display a very different geological heritage.
The Montsant Mountain (1,162 m.) range borders the Priorat wine appellation to the North; the Figuera and Lloar peaks are to the West and the Molló mountains can be found to the East. The region opens up to the Siurana River in the South, whose waters flow down towards the Ebro River.
The Siurana River traverses this wine region from North-East to South-West, carving out a sinuous and tortuous trail, surrounded on all sides by hills.
The wine appellation is made up of nine villages: Bellmunt del Priorat, Gratallops, Porrera, Poboleda, Torroja del Priorat, la Vilella Alta, la Vilella Baixa, el Lloar and la Morera de Montsant, which includes the hamlet of Scala Dei (Escaladei in Catalan) where the monastery ruins are to be found. There are also two further defined areas which fall partly within the municipal areas of El Molar and Falset, the capital of the administrative county.
– Total surface 180 Km2 – 17,629 HA – 43,562 acres
– Total vineyards: 12% land – 2,000 HA – 4,696 acres planted
– Total grape growers: 600
– Total wineries: 104
Mas Doix winery was created in the village of Poboleda, at the North-East part of the Priorat, close to the Montsant mountain and the Siurana valley.
Read More about Priorat wines in general here: http://winefolly.com/tutorial/in-search-of-the-best-wines-from-priorat/?utm_source=Wine+Folly&utm_campaign=4a937ac402-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2017_09_13&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_a18d8bdc1b-4a937ac402-82476885&mc_cid=4a937ac402&mc_eid=fbaf2a3270
Montsant. (from Wine Searcher) Montsant is a wine region in Catalonia, northern Spain. The gently undulating area was formerly categorized as a viticultural sub-zone of Tarragona, but local growers felt the high-altitude vineyards here earned the region recognition as a DO in their own right. As a result, the Montsant DO was created in 2001, its name taken from the Montsant massif (‘holy mountain’) that dominates the region’s landscape.
Montsant lies west of Tarragona city and forms a ‘C’ shape that almost completely surrounds the prestigious Priorat region. Vines were first introduced to the area by the Romans thousands of years ago, and Catholic monks continued the viticultural tradition during the Middle Ages. By the 19th Century, wines from Montsant were receiving praise at universal exhibitions.
Montsant’s most prized vineyards are located in terraces on steeply sloping sites, often interspersed with pine, almond and olive trees (the region is also known for its excellent olive oils). Here, the vines benefit from intense Mediterranean sunshine during the day and relatively cool temperatures at night. This high diurnal temperature variation assists in the development of complex aromas in the grapes, while preserving vital acidity. The soil is a local specialty known as ‘llicorella‘, which is high in granite and slate components. Together, these growing conditions result in the region’s wines being concentrated and expressive of the local terroir. The average altitude of the zone is 1180ft (360m) above sea level, rising steadily in the northwest and southeast as it approaches the Montsant and Montsalt mountains respectively.
Montsant has earned a reputation for its high-quality red wines, particularly those based on old Garnacha and Carinena (Carignan) vines. Ull de Llebre (Tempranillo), Spain’s darling, and international varieties such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Syrah also perform very well here. Most red wines are typically intended for aging and exhibit velvety textures even after a short time in oak. The old vines offer particularly complex examples.