Its starting to get cold in Melbourne now, cool nights and nice days. Even a bit of rain over the weekend (for non-aussie readers, most of Australia has been in drought for the past 5 years). To celebrate all this I've ordered in some PX to have a look at over the next month or [...]
Ribeiro is just inland from Rias Brixas, around the Mino river. White wines are still the mainstay here, but there is some red wines made from Mencia. The main varieties here are Treixadura and Loureiro with small amounts of Albarino and Godello. Gran Reboreda is from the home estate of Viña Reboreda. This is quite [...]
The second of the pair, the Borrosa is another single vineyard baga wine from Luis Pato. The Barrosa vineyard is made up of 5800, 80 year old baga vines surrounded by pine trees in clay/linestone soil. While these wines are powerful and full of fruit, they are restrained, supple and stylish, almost burgundian in style. [...]
This is one of two single vineyard wines made from the Baga grape. Yes, it kind of sounds like buggar, which is excellent in my book. Walk up to the bar and order a couple of buggars… Whatever the name of the grape, these two wines deserve some real attention, they are fantastic wines that [...]
The Vinha Formal is 100% Bical. Again, this wine needs to be a bit warmer to really show its stuff. Too cold and it looks all angular and awkward with loads of acid, let it warm up a bit and its a lovely drink. The wines in this range (there are 3) aren't currently available, but they [...]
Vinedos de Paganos is one of the Eguren's modern styled properties in Rioja Alavesa. A lot of traditional methods are used in producing the wine, but the result is a wine of high expression and restrained power. Two wines are produced at Vinedos de Paganos, this wine El Puntido and a new wine La Nieta [...]
Sierra Cantabria is the Eguren families more traditional bodega in Rioja. rather than build one super winemaking facilities for all of their wine making projects, these guys like to have separate facilities for each of their projects. This wine shows how good the 04 vintage was in Rioja, its a fairly inexpensive wine that shows [...]
Luis Pato is one of the leading players in the DO Bairrada, he has been leading the way with modern techniques and equipment with a number of ingenious varieties. Apparently the Bairrada DO has such a poor name in the market that Luis now labels most of his wine under a regional appleation of Beiras. [...]
I've been a bit slack on updates for the past week, but I have been drinking and taking notes. I've got a load of notes to post this week, so I'll try catch up in the next few days. I had a look at a few wines with the guys from The Spanish Acquisition last [...]
was lucky enough to get a seat at a couple of very good master classes last week. Put on by the Australian Sommeliers Association and the Spanish Trade Commission, there were two sessions complete with a panel of local and imported personalities and lots of goodies in between the sessions. A lot of work had obviously gone into setting up these tastings, the very nice upstairs room at Comme was the location and a number of hard to get wines where flown in from Spain. A lot of support from all the major importers as well.
Apart from the wine there were a number of good Spanish things to munch on, cheese, olives, bread etc. But the real standout was the Jamon Iberico from Broadway Gourmet. I think I ate about half a kilo of the stuff, so I feel qualified to say that this particular Jamon is the best I have had in Australia, really well flavored and textured, impossible to pass up. It not avilable at retail in Melbourne yet, so you’ll have to go to Movida to try some.
On to the tastings. The first session was titled “The New Spain” and was intended to show modern styles of white and red wines from a number of regions in Spain, as well as some classic sherries. The second tasting was all about Tempranillo from three regions: Rioja, Ribera del Duero and Toro. I’ll write that up separately. Each tastings had a panel of 5 up the front, including Jose Ramon Calvo from the renowned Mugaritz restaurant in San Sabasitan. Each section started with a bit of background and history from Jose Ramon and Raúl Moreno Yagüe from SOS (now moving on to Vue de Monde), then a few comments from the rest of the panel.