Tasting November 2021

November 2021 Tasting (Bodegas Volver) At Los Amigos Restaurant in Javea

Past President Andrew Johnson welcomed everyone, in place of President Tim Fawle, who with Sandy was finally able to visit family in New England. Greetings were sent to Tim, Sandy and family.

Andrew then welcome a wonderful number of new members, including some who joined us for the first time at this tasing.

He then welcomed the distributor in Levante for Bodegas Volver, Javier Valero who offered a special promotional offer for the wines we taste.

The society first visited Bodegas Volver in Pinoso, Alicante in October 2018 and had a great tasting with impressive wines. Volver creates wines in a number of wine-making regions of Spain as well as Alicante – La Mancha, Jumilla, Rueda, Valencia and soon Rías Baixas. The stamp which differentiates Bodegas Volver is its modern approach to its work with indigenous varieties such as Monastrell, Bouschet, Tempranillo, Merseguera, Macabeo, Moscatel etc.

As Javier was feeling short on confidence in his English, which was a shame, Andrew introduced each wine.

Neville presented the new scoring system for those who had not attended recently.

Before tasting the wines Andrew explained the “terroir”

Soils: The soil is dry and shallow, and is primarily composed of limestone, which is the mother rock. The soil is intermixed with large chunks of pure chalk. The largest marble quarry in Europe is located near our vineyards, testament to the chalky quality of the soils. Marble is the product of chalk, or calcium carbonate, that has been compressed over a very long period of time. The shallow dry soil is poor in organic material and full of limestone rocks.

Climate: Continental, with some Mediterranean influence. A very unique microclimate that is the result of the convergence of three mountain ranges, combined with the high altitudes, that are unique to this sub-region of Alicante.

Vineyard: The vineyards of Tarima are located between Sierra de Salinas, Sierra de Umbria and Sierra de La Sima at an altitude of 600 to 750 m above sea level. The microclimate of the region including humidity from the Mediterranean breezes help to develop deeper flavour in the fruit.



  1. Tarima Blanco, Merseguera and Chardonnay – offered at €5.95 a bottle

Merseguera is a white Spanish wine grape variety planted primarily in the AlicanteJumilla and Valencia regions, known by a total of 30 different names!

Vintage:  Characterised by a year of drought, although the summer was milder than normal and the corresponding Spring rains resulted in a long ripening process which produced grapes of the highest quality. Harvest at the beginning of September.

The grapes of this wine come from a total of 20 hectares planted between 1960 and 1970. All of them grown in the low system under natural conditions. The soil is lime and poor in organic matter and gives low production.

Production:  Indigenous varieties are picked at the beginning of September. At this time the grapes are mature and give very clean musts. Fermenting at a low temperature (16 degrees), to maintain the fruit of the grape, creates a very aromatic, pleasant wine.

Analysis:  Brilliant straw colour. In the nose the scent of White flowers, fresh fruit and aromatic herbs. In the mouth it is tasty, balanced with excellent acidity.

Accompaniment: Perfect accompaniment to seafood, shellfish, fish, uncured cheeses, salad and rice.


  1. Tarima Hill Blanco, Chardonnay & Merseguera, offered at €9.90 a bottle

Vintage:  Also characterised by drought, although the summer was milder than normal and the Spring rains resulted in a longer ripening that produced grapes of the highest quality. Harvest at the end of August.

Production:  Fermentation in French oak barrels followed by aging with batonage (stirring of the lees) for 6 months.

Analysis:  Brilliant golden colour. In the nose we find notes of ripe fruit, pineapple, mango, peach and honey as well as hints of vanilla and spices as it passes through the barrel. In the mouth it is tasty, balanced with good acidity. Intense finish.

Accompaniment: Perfect with fish, octopus, oysters, shellfish, rice


  1. Tarima al Natural 100% Monastrell, offered at €5.60 a bottle

Vintage:  Less dry than the previous year, characterised by scarce rainfall in Spring and September. Large temperature range in the last weeks of August and first of September leading to slow ripening of the Monastrell.

Production: Native yeasts, fermentation in vats, malolactic fermentation in steel pools and aging in French barrels for 6 months. This wine is naturally made and contains no sulphites.

Analysis:  Displays an opaque purple colour along with an abundance of blueberries and raspberries. Full bodied, incredibly concentrated, full in the mouth.

Accompaniment: All types of roast meat, beef, lamb



  1. Tarima Hill 100% Monastrell, offered at €10.40 a bottle

Vintage:  Characterised by extreme drought, with average rainfall less than 153.6 litres per metre squared. Wine Spectator (Robert Parker) voted this one its 17th best crianza wine in the world!

Vineyard: Created from grapes from multiple vineyards located in towns throughout the Vinalopo region: Pinoso, Salinas, El Maña, Monover. Planted in the low system between 1935 and 1970. The unirrigated traditional viticulture produced just 1.5 kg per plant.

Production: The harvest is timed for the optimal moment of ripening of the grapes, which is usually during the first days of Autumn. The fermentation is led by native airborn yeasts. Malolactic fermentation in barrels followed by 14 months in French barrels.

Analysis: Cherry colour with a hint of intense ruby. In the nose mature fruit, raspberries, blueberries, spices, hints of balsamic and notes of flowers. Tasty in the mouth, balanced and full-bodied. Long finish

Accompaniment: Recommended with red meat, game, roast meat, rice, cured cheeses, blue cheeses


  1.  Alicante Bouschet & Monastrell, offered at €16.80 a bottle

Andrew explained that Bouschet is another name for Garnacha Tintorera – one of very few grape varieties with naturally red flesh.

LOCATION: Pinoso, Alicante.

VINEYARD: Multiple privately owned ungrafted vineyards planted in the unique terroir of the same subregion .

YEAR(S) PLANTED: Between 1935 and 1970 for Monastrell. 1980 – 1985 for Alicante Bouschet.

VITICULTURE: Traditional dry farmed viticulture. The vines are planted in the goblet system, an all-natural, with no irrigation. Harvesting is by hand. The vines are pruned aggressively to reduce yields and concentrate flavours.

YIELDS: 1.5 kg per plant.

HARVEST: The Alicante Bouschet grapes are harvest middle – end of September.The monastrell grapes are harvest at the beginning of October.

WINEMAKING: The grapes are sorted meticulously at the winery, and fermented in stainless steel open top fermenters by indigenous yeast. The wine is transferred to primarily new French oak Bordelaise and Burgundy barrels. Each parcel is harvest, fermented and aged separately.

AGEING: 18 months in primarily new French oak Bordelaise and Burgundy barrels.

ANALYSIS: Deep colour. Lots of fruit on the nose and palette. Jammy blackberry, spicy, smoky. Dark chocolate and vanilla from the oak.


Phil Fraser – proposed a vote of thanks to Javier, to the restaurant and to Andrew

Andrew explained that our next event is our Christmas Tasting at A Bordo Javea. A party theme with nice wines chosen by President Tim! Black tie or suit for the men and the usual attire for the ladies.

Neville passed around the pricing for the wines and an order form. Over 30 cases were ordered on the night and the offer will be opened to all members.

Javier thanked everyone for the invitation and for the enthusiastic participation.

Andrew thanked everyone involved in this wonderful tasting and wished everyone farewell.

Details of the bodega can be found on their webpage   -w          https://bodegasvolver.com/bodega/history/?lang=en