Sunday, July 14, 2013

Vino de España - !Ya es tiempo!

Finally, the post I've muchly been waiting for!  These pictures and commentary below here reflect my wine experiences in Spain, and are by no means exhaustive.  I did not get pictures of every single wine I tried, nor do I remember exact taste nuance of every wine I tried.  Frankly, some moments were a bit more fuzzy than others.

My wine journal says I tried 16 wines whilst on the Iberian Peninsula, but it's likely that number is more like 20 or 22.  I tried taking decent notes on every wine I recorded; I did the best I could, and at the end of the day, that's the best anyone can ask for.

During our weekend in Galicia, the NW corner of Spain, we tasted a lot of white wines, and it stands to reason because the coastal area is perfect for the Albariño and Verdejo grapes/wines.  I found these dry whites crisp and refreshing (that's the high acidity and green apple, to me), and in addition to being a decent sipping wine, these wines go especially well with seafood (another staple of Galician life), and surprisingly, with hearty cheeses and chorizo.

In Valladolid, in the province of Castilla y Leon, dry reds were more the order of the day.  While whites were available (Ribeiro, especially), but two wine-producing regions are within easy reach of the city: Rueda and Ribera del Duero.  Maybe it's because my palate is evolving, or maybe my taste buds had been dulled, or maybe I am really am that sophisticated - but I found these reds to be softer and lighter than I was expected (think more Beaujolais than Cab Sauv).  Unlike the whites, these aren't that great for sipping, and are intended for food, I think.  Jamon, chorizo, mushrooms, and beef are all great pairing foods with these wines.

Hard to tell, but this is a Ribera del Duero I'm having with my stuffed red pepper

White

White

White

White

White

Red

A particularly interesting vintage.  A great palate-cleanser.

Red

Red

Not bad, eh?  A pretty fair sampling.  I can feel the wine snob growing inside of me...I hope it's easy to get a hold of an Albariño in the States.  A trip to a decent wine store (60+ miles away) is probably in order.  Don't tell my employer.

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