Saturday is my day to visit Sunset Corners for their weekly wine and cheese tasting. This week, they featured a selection of Spanish wines, all priced below $25.00, and all nice drinking wines. Part of the reason I enjoy visiting this shop is because they do not charge for their tastings, they get “newbie” wine drinkers in the shop, and it is always a pleasure to share their fresh experiences.
The first wine was a 2008 Bodegas Santa Quiteria Higueruela, from Almansa, Spain. This is 100% garnacha, unoaked, from old vines. The aroma was alcohol, sweet cherries, and a hint of floral notes. The taste was a little sweet, and slightly candy-like, with cooked dark fruits, and a touch of spice. The finish was short, and a little earthy. This wine retails for $11.99
Next was a 2007 Bodegas Silvano Garcia Vina Honda, from Jumilla (one of my favorite wine regions). This wine is 100% Monastrell, fermented in stainless steel vats. The aroma was smoky, with dark cherries, blueberries, and a hint of leather. The taste was tobacco, dark fruits, some slight vegetal notes. It has a medium finish that was nice – slightly bitter, but spicy. I thought the leather and tobacco notes were unusual in the wine, since it was not oaked, but they were the first thing that hit my nose. This wine retails for $14.99.
Third up was a wine I’ve had before – Vivir, Vivir. This particular vintage was 2008. This 100% unoaked Tempranillo. On the nose, a little spicy, with some vegetal notes, and dark berries. The flavor was cooked dark fruit, some tannins that softened out pretty quickly, and a medium, slightly bitter finish. This wine retails for $9.99. I found that this is a wine that you open and drink – it does not hold well. It would be a very nice party wine.
Next was the 2008 Bodegas Abanico Las Colinas del Ebro Terra Alta. This is a blend of Syrah (60%) and Garnacha (40%). The two varietals are fermented separately, then blended. They undergo a short period in French Oak barrels. On the nose, I found cherry, licorice, dark berries, and light floral notes. In the mouth, Light tannins, dark cherries, a little vanilla, and a slight vegetal note. The finish was medium, and slightly sweet. This wine retails for $12.99
Tomorrow, I’ll fill in the rest! Have a glass of wine with dinner – you’ll be glad you did! If you’re interested in finding out about their upcoming wine tastings, send an e-mail to Michael Bittell.