Barahonda 2011 is synergy: the creation of a whole that is greater than the simple sum of its parts.
The Yecla region in southeastern Spain has hot, dry summers that are ideal for the late-ripening Monastrell grape. Low rainfall and the temperature variation between night and day contribute to slow ripening, intense color, flavor and aroma concentration.
Monastrell is a rich, dark, fruit-driven red wine with meaty, herby and distinctive aromas and with strong tannins. Blending Monastrell with another Spanish favorite varietal, robust black grape Syrah, with flavors and aromas of blackcurrant, licorice with strong tannins and distinctive black pepper on the palate creates a mouthwatering, balanced wine with all of your favorite aromas and flavors that you love in Spanish wine.
The synergy of this blend is truly a gift for the palate! This is a sexy wine!
It is quite floral, spicy and muscular with a well-developed full body you can see in the glass and taste on the palate. Fragrances of dark, ripe blackberries rich with spiciness and a generous touch of licorice and minerality from the limestone,clay and sandy soils. A sturdy backbone of tannins with a hint of smokiness creates a wine that is big, bold, aromatic and luscious all at the same time!
A Pairing for You!
Here is a leisurely meal for the weekend with Spanish Paella filled with chicken, shrimp and mussels with bold spices including smoked paprika and saffron. Home-smoked briny olives (ask me how!) served with Spanish cheeses are the perfect tapas to complete this wine pairing dream!
I’m not talking about that syrupy sweet pink mystery juice in the giant bottle that grandma sipped on special occasions. Is that even really wine?
Rose’ Wines have the acidity of white wine with the fruit and character of a red wine. They are not overly sweet and considered a DRY wine. Rose’s are versatile and food friendly wines. They pair well with many foods and most cheeses pair well with a dry Rose’.
Rose’s are made with red grapes, the same grapes used to make many varieties of red wines. It’s all about how long the pomace or solid components of the grapes are left in the tank to ferment.
The longer the grape skins,seeds and stems are in contact with the juice, the darker the color. Depending on the color and intensity of the rose’ the winemaker desires, the time the pomace spends in the juice might be for just a few hours.
The result is a lively,refreshing medium-bodied wine with depth of fresh fruit flavors and aromas such as strawberry and raspberry balanced with good acidity. A slight amount of tannins are present due to the fermentation process adding structure and body to the wine.
Rose’s are great for anytime of the year but I especially love a great Rose’ on pleasant late summer evenings with a cheese platter or grilled meats.
Malbec-blend Rose’s have been a particular favorite for me. This Chilean Rose’ CALCU is made from a blend of Malbec,Syrah and Petit Verdot grapes. Each of these grapes produces intense, full-bodied red wines. When Rose’ are made with these grapes,a clean and crisp acidic wine is produced with lively grapefruit notes and and vibrant notes of raspberry,strawberry and cherry.
I found this delicious handcrafted,artisanal cheese at Whole Foods from JASPER HILL CREAMERY in Vermont and glazed it with Bonnie’s Jams Raspberry Lime Rickey. It was delicious!
MOSES SLEEPER, named after a historical pioneer scout, is an new American bloomy rind semi-soft cow’s milk cheese similar in texture to a triple cream. This cheese is creamy,soft and buttery. It has a slightly grassy taste but is not pungent. The Raspberry Lime Rickey was a perfect complement to this semi-soft cheese. This unique jam is tangy with lime and sweet raspberry.
MOSES SLEEPER’s fresh,creamy texture combined with the tangy lime and raspberry jam made a perfect wine and food pairing with the dry,crisp Rose’and its fresh raspberry notes. Be sure to check out the Whole Foods trip and blog to Jasper Hill Farms for more information about these fantastic Vermont cheeses.
Be adventurous! There are many delicious, dry ROSE’S available from your favorite wine shop. See if you can find a favorite!
If you are the mood for a bubbly, you must try one of my favorites CREMANT de BOURGOGNE BRUT ROSE’ of Burgundy,France.
This lively,dry sparkling wine is made from the Pinot Noir grape. It is fresh,vivacious and has intense aromas and flavors of raspberry and red currant and would be another perfect match for this cheese plate.
These mouthwatering Rose’s as well as other fine wines are available at BRINKMAN’S Wine and Spirits in Franklin,TN.
Read more about Vermont’s new cheeses and the cool stories behind the names. MOSES SLEEPER is available at Whole Foods in Franklin,TN or check out their website.
Do you ever wonder what that bottle of wine really tastes like and hesitate to purchase because you’re just not sure if you’ll like it after you get home?
Tennessee’s recent law approving in-store wine tastings gives us an incredible opportunity to sample many more wines that have come into our market and apparently is attracting boutique wineries to treat us to their handcrafted wines,estate grown grapes.
Grand Cru Wine and Spirits hosted this in-store tasting. Check with your favorite wine shop to see when they are hosting in-store wine
The owner of Terralsole Winery and Vineyards, a beautiful and terroir-driven Italian Winery from Montalcino of Southern Tuscany was in town this week sampling their incredible wines.The owners Athena and Mario Bollag own and work this 35 acre vineyard themselves. Mario plants the vines himself and produces world class, terroir-driven Brunellos (Sangiovese Grosso),Cabernet Franc Merlot,Syrah and a wine that is fast becoming a cult wine with the sommeliers and wine geeks alike: PASTICCIO.
Whenever you have the opportunity to meet the actual winemaker, do it!
I had the pleasure of meeting and talking with Athena (pictured) at Grand Cru Wine and Spirits and finding out about their wines and vines. And, Athena is also a musician. She will be playing her fiddle with THE GREEN FIELDS OF AMERICA IRISH BAND at the National Folk Festival Sept 2nd through 4th in downtown Nashville.
WHAT’S IN A LABEL?
Let’s face it. We all love a beautiful label. Some might even say that they have purchased bottles of wine because of the label alone! With Terralsole Wines, you will want to do so for this reason and more. There is so much more to a bottle of wine than meets the eye.
The labels on the bottles of Terralsole Wines are from Haitian Artists. Athena and her husband Mario passionately support Haiti through Te’ Soley a non-profit organization that funds specific projects to needy children and their families with educational, agricultural and trash disposal needs. Five dollars is donated to the fund for each bottle of wine purchased with these labels. I can’t think of a better reason to buy for the label!
THESE WINES ROCK!
The estate-grown Sangiovese Grosso, Syrah, Merlot and Cabernet Franc grapes express their terroir by the uniqueness of each wine produced. The terroir defines the area that the grapes are grown in and it uniqueness is not unlike a fingerprint. Their microclimate and soil of this 35 acre vineyard has its own identity.
If you haven’t experienced a Tuscan grown Merlot and Syrah, now’s your chance. This isn’t your grandma’s Merlot or the typical Syrah. The Coldoro (Merlot) is intense and fruity and the Solista (Syrah) is powerful, juicy and intense. Both represent this Tuscan terroir well.
I also sampled the Brunello’s, Rosso di Montalcino and the Pasticicco. The first two wines are 100% estate grown Sangiovese Grosso.
The Rosso was a fun and “drink now” wine. It’s freshness and fruit would be great with a gourmet brick oven pizza.
Brunello di Montalcino is one of Italy’s best known and most expensive and prized wines of this area. They just get better as they age! The flavors and aromas of roses,dark chocolate,intense cherry and floral notes with firm tannins and acidity just become more intense and will be a wine to enjoy years later. The quality of the grapes at each picking, how long they are oaked and bottled determine which wine it will be. Each Brunello was fantastic I would recommend these for sure.
The ’03, ’04 and Reserva Brunella di Montalcino’s were delightful and delicious!
The ’03 is ready to drink now. The ’04 could benefit by a few more years in the bottle. And, the Reserva will be enjoyed for many years. As the aging increases so does the intensity and deliciousness. Grab a bottle for now and a bottle for later.
Athena told me that Pasticcio means a “big mess” in Italian. This Pasticcio has a growing cult following by many in the wine world. The ’05 is a “wonderful mess” of estate grown Cab Franc, Merlot and Sangiovese. It’s rich with powerful,clean bright berry fruit, acidity, terroir-driven minerality and dominant Cab Franc is what -I am sure- contributes to its cult following.
Its ready to drink now and I can’t wait to pair this with seared lamb chops drizzled with garlic and olive oil with tapenade topping. I have 2 bottles. I hope you can find a couple of bottles!
If you like boutique wines and especially wines of Montalcino, you will want to get your hands on these. Because they are hand-crafted small vineyard wines, as you might imagine, there is a limited supply.