Category Archives: SPAIN

Springtime Balancing Act: La Flor y La Abeja

For a wine person, I spend more time mocking wine conventions than I do attending them, but one of life’s primary sanity lessons is that sarcasm is free while a lecture on whether or not to de-stem grapes prior to … Continue reading

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Blending: A Tightrope For The Vinologically Dexterous

Single-variety wines may make for some small talk, but in most cases, blended wines are better.  Which is why, nearly everywhere, for a wine to label itself using the name of a grape—Chardonnay, Syrah, et. al—appellation laws generally allow some … Continue reading

Posted in Calatayud, SPAIN | Tagged | 1 Comment

A Quartet of Cool Cavas To Combat Climactic Calefaction

Finally!  A story involving Formosa that is totally unrelated to a bunch of Chinese casino millionaires scooping up bellwether French estates and paying such premiums for futures that you and me can no longer afford the wines. If this keeps … Continue reading

Posted in Penedès, SPAIN | Tagged , | 2 Comments

‘CR20’ And Ruscalleda’s Rocking Restaurante

Every decade or so, a new culinary caprice climbs aboard the buzzword B&O, and—city by city—restaurants open up to cash in on pay homage to the ‘trend’. Here in Detroit over the past thirty years or so, there was ‘nouvelle … Continue reading

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Las Rocas On A Garnacha Roll

If you’re trying to farm in Calatayud, you’re pretty much stuck between Las Rocas and a hard place.  Among the most inhospitable-looking places in the solar system, ranking between Halley’s Comet and the fifth moon of Neptune on the bucket … Continue reading

Posted in Calatayud, Grenache, SPAIN | 2 Comments

Velvety ‘Veleta’: A Big Cheese In Tiny Contraviesa-Alpujarra

Q.: What does Veleta have in common with Velveeta? A.: Neither are made out of cheese. * Okay, now that the inevitable and idiotic processed cheese-food reference has been laid to rest, I turn my focus toward a series of … Continue reading

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Iberian Intoxicants for New Year’s Day (And Beyond)

What’s the with-it Spaniard imbibing on this frosty January Sunday?  Something from Torres, no doubt. Founded in 1870 by Jaime Torres, the family now controls the largest winery in Spain along with the most extensive vineyards in  Penedès and can … Continue reading

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Torres Can Go Green So Long as the Tempranillo Stays Red

For the most part, winemakers are a responsible lot.  They have to be; as stewards of a substance that causes great joy (you and me) and great sorrow (all those victims of cirrhosis, car wrecks, alcohol-fueled felonies) they’ve got to … Continue reading

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Have Yourself a Códax Moment

One is ponderously dull, bleak with obscurity, difficult to follow and hard to enjoy; the other is light, lyrical and a snap to fall in love with. What do Fyodor Dostoyevsky and albariño and have in common? Only this: most … Continue reading

Posted in BY VARIETAL, Rías Biaxas | Leave a comment

Sherry, Baby!

You wanna party?  I mean, hit a real six-day blowout rave, an around-the-clock thump riot that makes Mardi Gras look like the Jasper County Husking Bee? Try April in Andalusia. Overshadowed by impossibly romantic mountaintop villas, cresting expansive snow-white beaches, … Continue reading

Posted in Jerez | 1 Comment