17-08-2018

Wines to see the summer out

The second half of August in Spain forms a downhill sprint to September/reality. Everyone is tanned, well swam and well, kinda “over” the whole beach thing at this point. Many just want to chill, usually in the less busy points of civilization such as the villages, while the return to work looms ever more defined on the horizon.

The heat is still with us however and much like past years, the humidity as well. I don’t like the premise that you can’t drink red wine when it’s hot as I say that when it’s too hot to drink red wine, just don’t drink. While that works for a personal credo, always having a couple of bottles of something fresh and crisp around the house goes a long way to win over guests who may not share in my no-wine summer beliefs. If you don’t believe me, try offering multiple rounds of “fresh, cold water” and see how many repeat visitors you get. NB – offer fresh, cold water whenever you don’t want to have repeat guests.

The following wines are all well priced and form a cross section of various complexities from around Catalunya. Castell del Remei in DO Costers del Segre is a larger producer but they have a nice range of wines and are working to define and market just what the territory “is”. Pascona is a cellar in DO Montsant but this wine isn’t as it comes from grapes just outside the region. Winemaker Toni Ripoll has dubbed it, “Mòra la Nova Terres de l’Ebre” which I’m pretty sure isn’t an official IGT but explains that it’s, “river wine” quite well. It reminds me a great deal of what you find in some of the warmer Roussillon blends.

The last from Cara Nord is quite interesting. Hailing from DO Conca de Barberà, it’s a bit atypical as it’s a white that includes a bit of Trepat (a red) but I think it works quite well overall although it may be borderline in terms of that fresh, pool pounder and is more of an evening option but I leave that up to your own discovery and ultimate conclusions.

Castell del Remei – Gotim Blanc 2017
Fresh, crisp, lively citrus notes. Refreshing but not incredibly lengthy persistence although great for a cold glass when needed.
Sauvignon Blanc, Macabeu 12.5% 6.50€
* 86

Pascona – La Germana 2017
Straw colored. Lychee, plump ripe apricot, ripe melon, lemon pith, grapey notes, light saline bitterness, small degree of tart green apply, minor clay mineral notes. Much more citric and thick on the palate, oily feel, melon bitterness picks up and trails. Medium plus acidity, medium finish.
Macabeu, Muscat à petits grains 13% 8€
* 88

Cara Nord – Blanc 2017
Nearly meaty in the nose with a good degree of depth, citric notes, floral, light crushed mint touches. Body holds much more structure and even lets on a dash of red fruit notes. Downright tropical in some respects with a bit of pineapple and grapefruit. Excellent acidity and overall a very refined, elegant wine for those who like a bit of backbone to their whites.
Macabeu, Chardonnay, Trepat 13% 10.50€
** Q 91