Sunday 2 August 2015

The Fifth Costa Brava Dispatch

Home again in Sweden. The last week in Costa Brava we had no wifi - a huge first world problem - so there were no Costa Brava Dispatches.

Instead I tasted a lot of wines.

I managed to taste 30 wines from 17 different producers from Empordà. Empordà is a DO (Denominación de Origen) since 1972 but wines have been made in the region for some 2.500 years, since the Greeks brought grapevins with them. The name Empordá comes from the Greek city of Empúries, which was founded in this area in 575 BC.

Up to the phylloxera struck in the end of the 19th century the region wine producing had been steadingly growing and there were 40.000 hectares of vineyards. Empordá never really recovered from the phylloxera plague (which they call it), and today the DO consists of 1.826 hectares.

But much have happened in the 21th century, more of that in following posts. Now for some wines tasted and drunk.

2006 Negre de Guarda, Castello de Calonge
Walking down the market street of L´Estartit we came across a table in a corner where bottles of wine stood. We were presented to the wines in a mix of Spanish and English, and since I live by the motto when in doubt, chose the most expensive alternative, I bought this bottle. For 8 Euro.
It is a blend of Granatxa (Grenache), Tempranillo and Cabernet Sauvignon and have spent two years in cask. The nose is upfront and somewhat mature with a old fashioned Rioja nose, in the shape of dill, crawfish and soft red fruit. But there are also scents of smoke, earth and clean stables. Very good.
The taste is mature, dry and fairly intense with notes of vanilla dusted cherries, scorched earth, dried strawberries and smoke. The finish is medium long and dry. Kept well all evening long. Very good for the 8 Euro I paid.
85p   (tasted 2015/07)

2014 Mar, Mas Oller
Mas Oller is owned by Carles Esteva who also owns Can Ráfols de Caus in Penedès. This white consists of 80% Picaboll and 20% Malvasia. The nose is cool, flowery and creamy with notes of dry honey, dried up glue, melon, pine and lots of mineral. Salivating and fine. Some white pepper after a while.
The taste is full bodied and spicy with notes of ripe peaches, rubber, warm tiles and melon. A medium level acidity. Needs to be rather cold to retain its freshness, when it hits room temperature it feel a bit blowsy. But a really good wine for 9 Euro (this turned out be a consistent pattern - the wines from Empordá, with some exception, are cheap! And good!)
86p   (tasted 2015/07)

2012 Pur, Mas Oller
The red Mas Oller is a blend of 50% Syrah, 30% Garnacha and 20% Cabernet Sauvignon and sports a fresh, herbal nose with notes of blueberries, meat, balsa wood and earth. Very good. Interesting enough I have, as with the Mar above, although tasted on different days, written salivating to describe the nose.
The taste is cool, medium bodied and peppery with notes of blueberries, crowberries, hot earth and some rubber. A medium long, fresh, peppery finish. Very, very good. Paired really well with some local made sausages. For 10 Euro a real bargain.
88p   (tasted 2015/07)

2010 Carlota, Oliver Conti
Here we have a predominantly Cabernet Franc wine (75%, the rest being Cabernet Sauvignon). The nose is open and flirty with notes of cool black currants, green pepper, a hint of chocolate and freshly cut grass. A fine laid back sweetness to the fruit. Very, very good.
The taste is still young and focused with notes of red and black currants, liquorice, smoke, earth and green peppers. A high, fine acidity. Long and fine. Really good and should become even better with 2-3 years in the cellar. 15 Euro. 4.516 bottles made. Info here.
88p   (tasted 2015/07)

Yummy pigs trotters!

No comments:

Post a Comment