Tasting February 2022

Tasting February 17 Republic Food and Lounge Bar Denia Marina

Gordon Sellars

As you may have seen from the table menus, this wine tasting was designed to pair 5 small food courses to 5 specific wines.

  It is a departure from our normal format of shared starter plates, a choice of fish or meat main dish, finishing off with a desert.

 The wines often presented in this format are 2 white or rose wines followed by 3 red wines, which are usually newest/lightest first, with the more expensive aged wines last, sometimes to be savoured with the desert.

I know that  this is not always the case, but it could be argued that a fine aged red wine might best be appreciated before the sweet course.

In addition some of our members have commented that their preferences for white and rosado wines have not been catered for.

So, in this tasting I feel we have departed from the norm in presenting 2 white wines, 1 rosado wine, one red wine and a sparkling wine to accompany the desert, each carefully paired to an individual food dish.

I am not suggesting that this should always be the format for our tastings but I do think that we should be open to change and to try different ways of appreciating that which we all have in common ….. Love of good wine.

The first of our wines ..Gran Cardiel Verdejo.-Presented by Gordon

This is a simple uncomplicated blend of Verdejo and Viura from DO Rueda.It comes from the bodega of Felix Lorenzo Cachazo and has a freshness of white fruits and aromatic herbs which I feel combine well with our first course which is  Tuna Tataki, allowing both the wine and the food to complement each other in a manner that neither predominates.

Wine Number 2 – El Paseante la Duda, D.O. Monterrei – paired with Prawn Bisque, presented by Caryl

The wine tasted now is made entirely from a grape variety little known just a few decades

ago Godello.  Before I tell you more about it I would like to read a few sentences from an article written by Jancis Robinson – a very famous English Master of Wine – about Spanish white wines.

In the 1990s, racy marine-tasting dry whites made from Albarino grapes became increasingly fashionable, first in Spain and then abroad.  The rather Sauvignon Blanc-like tart whites of Rueda followed, many of them made from the local Verdejo grape.

But I have a new enthusiasm; wonderfully complete, beautifully balanced fine whites from the local Godello grape grown inland of Rias Baixas.  These are dry,dense wines that have lots of fruit and acidity and can improve in bottle for many years.  In the 1970s the variety was almost extinct, but cuttings were taken by locals from such vines as remained and the first varietal Godello wine of the modern era was released only in the mid 1980s.

So what impressed this outstanding wine critic so much?  This particular example is

Paseante La Duda 2020 DO Monterrei.  The grapes are grown in small vineyards which are situated both in valleys and on slopes which give intense aromas and concentration to the wine.  The grapes are picked at night, fermented and then matured on the lees for 3 months.  We find a light yellow and greenish colour, bright and clear.  On the nose there are distinct fruity aromas of nectarines, apricots, peaches and more earthy tones of mushrooms and stones.  The fruity aromas come through on the palate mixed with mineral notes and the finish is long with citric notes, very clean and elegant.  Bearing in mind the Godello grape has been grown within the Monterrei region since Roman times, the elegance and outstanding personality of this wine can impress any wine lover as well as the professionals.

Wine Number 3  – Enate Rosado D.O Somontano presented by Gordon

We were now about enjoy a fish couse of red mullet, for which we  chose a rosado wine which many of you may be familiar with since it has featured before in some of our tastings over the years and in fact has been visited by some society members on trips to the Somontano region.

I refer to Enate Rosado made from the Cabernet Sauvignon grape.

We often associate this grape with big red wines not with rose wines and it is true this rose wine is not light or frivolous, it has character and complexity and can stand up to most foods and certainly will go well with this fish dish.

The winemaker says that it has the soul of a white and the body of a red and has been designed to play in the champions league. Whether you agree with this anology will depend on how closely you follow futball and of course how you enjoy it.

In any event look for fruit on the nose and balanced acidity on the palate with long interesting finish, again unusual with rosados.

Wine Number 4 – Carramimbre Roble 2020 D.O. Ribero del Duero -presented by Caryl

This wine is called Roble and is a red wine from Bodegas Carramimbre in the province of Valladolid.  A recent bodega, it was founded in 1997 by a group of families with a long history in the vineyards in the Ribera del Duero area.

Inside the winery, wines are aged in barrels principally made of French oak  but mixed with American oak – this blend produces a flavour that is both intense and pronounced.

Chosen for its location and quality, the wine estate is a unique landscape of young vines dating back 15 to 25 years planted with Tempranillo and Cabernet Sauvignon.  This Roble wine is predominantly Tempranillo – 90% – with 10% of Cabernet Sauvignon.

In its short history Carramimbre Roble has become a leader in its category, standing our for its personality and balance.  Highly fruity and mid-bodied.

With aromas of red berries and a hint of wood, the fruit and freshness make a further impact on the palate.

The appearance is cherry red with ruby tones and violet highlights at the rim.

The aroma shows intense spicy notes – cinnamon, peppermint, spearmint – and touches if vanilla blended with tones of ripe fruit producing a wine that is both clean and complex.

On the palate, a lusciously strong opening characterised by the tannins paves the way for the wines mouth-filling quality.  Generous and balanced, the finish is dominated by the spicy and red fruit flavours. What a very welcome tinto to pair with the delicious entrecote steak prepared by our hosts here at Republic Lounge.  The price is very very attractive – and we shall be distributing the prices shortly – but in the light of its Penin score of 90 – nothing less than a steal.

Wine Number 5 – Bornos Frizante D.O Rueda – presented by Gordon

This is a light and frivolous wine specially designed to enjoy around the pool or with aperativos or indeed with the desert of Apple Strudel, vanilla ice cream and chocolate sauce, with which we have paired it on this occasion.

It is low in alcohol so that we can have a few glasses of it with no dileterious effects but has enough to make it interesting.

It is made from verdejo grapes and has a pale yellow with green refexions. Look for citrous notes on the nose and it has an optimal balance on the palate between sweetness and acidity and of course that delightful fizz.

In short it is a fun wine.

Summing up

We understand that the committee have decided that the society should be more innovative in its style of tasting in the future and for this reason we have tried to do something different.

We hope those members and guests attending enjoyed this slightly alternative format of wine tasting which was presented on the night.

Tim Fawle closed the meeting in the normal way with a few well chosen words.