Lately it feels as though Spain’s most compelling and thrilling wines have been coming from two regions, Galicia and Catalunya. Yes, Rioja is wonderful but Rioja is Rioja and always fine but there are too many other areas where the wines tend to be overblown, heavy-handed juice boxes made to obtain a review instead of reflecting their origins or to accompany food.
Some call Albariño Spain's number one white wine. Others say the title belongs to Rueda's Verdejo. However, all seem to agree that Godello belongs right up there with the other two. Godello’s spiritual home is eastern Galicia, close to its border with Castilla-Leon and is the main white grape of the growing regions of Valdeorras, Monterrei, Bierzo and Ribera Sacra. Over the past decade or so we have seen an abundance of new or previously unknown producers emerge from these areas and Adega Vella is one such that has excelled in Ribera Sacra. This particular growing region has vineyards terraced high above two rivers (Sil and Minho) which are dominated by slate soils. Vella’s vineyards are in the Sil Valley and are at a 65-degree angle! Made without oak, Very subtle aromas of white grapefruit, lemon, ginger, minerals, peach, saline and earth lead into a vinous texture that possesses superb delineation and zestiness. The slow-building finish is very long, subtle, with flinty tones, and terrific grip. This one is too tempting to pass up. Have it with cod, smoked salmon, or spicy shrimp dishes.
When it comes to Ribera Sacra and its red wines, this is a No Tempraniilo, No Garnacha and No BS zone. The Mencia grape, which traces its roots to the Portuguese grape of Jaen, prevails here and thrives within these soils and terraced slopes.
The question is, are you cool enough to drink Ribera Sacra? This wine is so chic and bright that you will have to go out and buy a new pair of RayBan's just to fit in. Frankly, this red wine makes me want to jump out of my shoes whenever I drink it. Lifting, inviting tones of marionberry, pepper and soft roasted herbs and plenty of meat and mineral that all seem to build as the wine opens in the glass. Wonderful intensity and medium body from low-yielding fruit, high elevation and old vines. A red wine that will pairs impeccably with Spain's national vegetable – pork! Sausages, chops, loin, Serrano ham, it all works with this wine!
Friday July 29 from 1:30 - 6:30
SOMETHING FROM ITALY
Summer on the Sunny Peninsula. Drop by to savor a selection of Italian wines. 2 reds along with a white and Rose will be poured this Friday
2014 Gurrieri Cerasuolo di Vittoria (Red)
2015 Italo Pietrantonj Cerasuolo D’Abruzzo (Rose)
2013 Piagga Carmignano ‘Il Sasso' (Another Red)
2015 Cataldi Madonna Pecorino (White Wine, not cheese)