Newsletters 2024,  Posts

Newsletter June 2024

Dear members

The May Tasting dinner attended by 46 members, including 3 new members and 8 guests, represented all change for Costa Blanca Wine Society; new presenters, new Bodega and new venue. Fergus and Joan Fitzpatrick who are new members of our Tasting Team hosted the event at Real Club Nautico Denia, a really impressive new venue which we are likely to go back to in future years. The wines were presented by Julian Bodin and Antonio Lopez from Bodegas San Isidro in Jumilla. The wines tasted (described in more detail {here}) demonstrated the flexibility of the Monastrell grape, including a crisp delicate rosado, two full flavoured, fruit-forward reds, through to a very popular sweet red. There was an opportunity afterwards to order these wines.

In mid May, your Tasting Team had a ‘mid year’ event which was part thank you social function and part feedback and recap on events in the year to date with a preview of the rest of the year. The Tasting Team comprising up to 20 members is flexible in that some members join for just a couple of years. Their role is to host and organise one or more of our monthly tastings during the year. They receive significant support from Committee members and those who have organised previous events. A primary aim is innovation, so any member who has ideas on how we could or should do things better or differently, is very welcome to join the Tasting Team and help to ensure that all members have a great experience at our monthly events.

Our webmaster, John Sloggie, has been working overtime this month on two projects; one to improve the reliability and stability of our website which has suffered some downtime in recent weeks; and secondly researching and purchasing on our behalf new microphones and speakers for our monthly tastings. Those who have attended an event in recent months will fully understand why the purchase of these new items of kit was essential.

The annual four day wine trip, this time to Costers del Segre in Cataluna, took place in early May, with 33 members benefiting from the excellent planning of John and Shirley Sloggie and Tim and Sandy Fawle. (A fuller report can be accessed {here}.) The popularity of this trip is such that it is virtually always oversubscribed, so make a note for next year to apply as soon the details are announced.

Our next Tasting will be on 20 June at Puerto Blanco in Calpe. It is one of our most popular venues and one of the few that we return to every year. Sara and I will host the evening and wines from Rioja will be presented by the larger than life character Gonzalo Lainez, Export Manager of Grupo Principe de Viana. We will be tasting a wide range of Rioja wines (if you thought that you knew Rioja wines, try these with an opportunity to buy at substantial discounts afterwards.)

Any of you who eat at restaurants in the Costa Blanca region will be all too aware of the increased prices being charged. We have tried to hold our prices to members as much as possible this year, but for this special event at this superb venue we are having to increase the cost to members to €50 and to guests to €60. 

The meeting will also be attended by Irene Bodnarec, features journalist with Costa Blanca News. This is an integral part of our attempt to broaden the interest in and membership base of CBWS. Please book early for this highly popular event. Bookings will close on Friday 14 June at 12.00, after which no more bookings can be made and no refunds will be available for cancellations. The pre dinner ‘welcome’ cava will be available from 19.30. If you arrive before that time, please purchase your own drinks at the cash bar.

The menu for the Puerto Blanco Tasting is as below. Please book directly from the website or via the link below.

Mini Canelón de pato con salsa boletus.  (Mini duck cannelloni with boletus sauce). 

Tartar de salmón con helado de mostaza. (Salmon tartare with mustard ice cream). 

Sorbete de la casa


Bacalao con cremoso de albahaca y tomate cherry confitado . (Cod with creamy basil and confit cherry tomato). 


Noisette de Iberico  a la Pimienta Verde. (Iberico Noisette with Green Pepper)


Postre – Mango y coco con jengibre  (Dessert – Mango and coconut with ginger) 

There will, as usual, be no tasting events in the tourist/hot weather months of July and August, so our next meeting after June will be in September. We are currently planning for this to be in the beautiful outdoor setting of the Montesanco vineyard between Teulada and Benitachell. This will probably be an informal tapas event along the lines of the highly successful Pepe Mendoza event  from a couple of years ago. Details will follow during the Summer.

The October event at Les Rotes in Denia will be hosted by Patrick and Helen Harrild. The theme of the event will be ‘Music and Wine’. As many of you will know Patrick is an internationally renowned musician (and more importantly a member of CBWS), so this is an event not to be missed!

I hope that you all have a great month, particularly those participating in the Wine Education Workshop on 3 June.