Thursday, February 23, 2006

Thursday Night Wine Blogging

Greatings wine lovers! I think I am on some kind of record pace here with what I think is my fourth Thursday Night Wine Blog in a row. Spains looms ever closer on my vacation horizon and I am remaining true to my committment to explore the various wines of the country right up to our departure in a few weeks after which I suppose I'll be exploring them nightly. For two weeks. Cool.

Tonight I have another product of my trip to Sam's a few weeks ago; a 2002 bottle of Barranc dels Closos. I have no idea what this wine is or what region it is from. As with other Thursday blogs, I'll pop the old cork, take a sip or two, and then investigate what we can find out about our honored guest. Reading the bottle I notice that it says the denominacio d'origen is Priorat, which based on what we've learned in our past Spain weeks is a specific part of a region in Spain. To be honest I can't remember if it is Rioja, or another region. I guess you could say that in all the excitement, I clean forgot. So we'll look into it.

But first, lets taste this baby, shall we?

I've popped the cork, and it is a real cork thank goodness and before I've poured a drop I'm smelling fruit, very reminicent of strawberry. This has been a consistently interesting aspect of all the Spanish wines that I've tried in this series. Each one, to one degree or another has had very strong fruit scents out of the bottle. This one, as with the first wine in this series is very strong. I won't say it fills the room, but as I type this I can smell the scent coming out of the bottle.

I've poured a glass and the fruit remains strong, but is complimented by an earthy tone....I'm picking up Grenachey overtones which is odd. Very odd. First, I didn't know that the Spanish vintners used Grenache, and I'm guessing there is some in this wine (perhaps a lot, but we'll have to see how it tastes) and two, I've never smelled strawberrys in a Grenache wine. So, you know, I'm a bit confused here. Lets taste it.

The taste is kind of flat on the front. Not bad, just a bit flat. I'm getting a hint of something, but it disappears and comes back. I'm not so sure about the Grenache either. Another sip seems to be in order. Maybe it's some blueberry and there is that crispness that I've gotten in the other Spanish wines, it's a clean taste, crisp on the tongue. This is definately the lightest of the wines that we've sampled over the last few weeks. It is very refreshing, quite tasty but does not have the lasting mouth that the others had.

None-the-less, I would recommend it. I paid $15 for this bottle and I would describe it as very drinkable. Certainly not great, but quite pleasing. Ok before I surf for some info, lets guess the grape(s). I'm going with Grenache, because I definately smelled it, and what lingering taste is there has it. The fruit tells me there could be some Syrah, but since we know its Spain I'm guessing there is Tempranillo. Although, thinking about it I'd expect that smokey aspect that the other Tempranillos had. So I'm a little stumped. 100% Grenache? Geez, I don't think so yet nothing else seems to work. I'll go 60% Syrah and 40% Grenache.

Well here is some interesting information on the Mas Igneus vintner who produced this wine. It looks like Prioat is a wine that is produced in the Catalonia region, which if memory serves is near Barcelona. The soil is clay and mineral and and the grapes? Something called Garnatxa and Syrah. I have no idea what Garnatxa is, but at least I got the Syrah right. Here is the site for the actual bottle.

On further tasting, the mouth is now a little spicier than before, although I'm a bit suspicious of this reading since I now know that Syrah is definately in the wine and I would expect to taste the spice. I'm enjoying this wine quite a bit. It is not a great wine by any stretch, but for 15 bucks it is a nice wine to enjoy on its own, or perhaps with a bit of cheese. I don't think I would recommend it with a meal since it might get overwhelmed by any strong food.

So, another Thursday, another bottle of wine. I think I better work on killing the rest of the bottle with Mrs. P.

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