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A superb time spent in East London last Saturday. Six foodie bloggers met-up for a little wine and food from Spain tasting. When I say little I lie. There was a mass of the most delicious foods and some great wines too (notes below). Write-ups on SlashFood and SpittoonExtra and if you follow the individual participants blogs they are sure to have some details of the event there too. I had a splendid time.

UPDATE: Passionate Cook has posted her thoughts on the wines and a full run-down of the food.

The Whites:

Wine Tasting Note: Herederos de Argeso Las Medallas de Argueso Manzanilla, NV, Spain
Handfords £3.75 37.5cl bottle
A little half bottle of screw-capped sherry to begin the day – bone dry, hazelnuts, full bodied but delicate. Organic apparently. Alcohol 15%. No one admitted to really enjoying sherry other than as a cooking ingredient. I have a recipe involving prawns and dry sherry I must dig it out…
Scribblings Rating – 86/100

Wine Tasting Note: Raventos El Preludi Clos Del Serral, 2004, Penedes, Spain
£7.99 Handfords
A blend of Xarello, Macabeo, Chardonnay that began promisingly enough but quickly developed corked notes on the palate. I normally detect corkiness very easily on the nose but this took its time to show in the aroma but was obvious in the mouth. Alcohol 11.5%.

Johanna’s Marinated Tuna

Wine Tasting Note: Basa Blanco, 2004, Rueda, Spain
Sauvignon Blanc grape around £5 Brindisa.
Value wise this was a star. Pale yellow in colour with a flowery and gooseberry aroma. So obviously Sauvignon Blanc. The palate was all it needed to be – crisp and fresh with a tropical fruit edge – guava, star fruit and strawberry. A touch short a few noted on the finish but great value. Alcohol 13%. I really enjoyed this with the Tuna Dish (just marinated in lime juice and herbs I think from Johanna the Passionate Cook) and also with a soft goat’s cheese, Suspiro, Jenni from Pertelote supplied, which also came from Brindisa – they did well out of us!
Scribblings Rating – 94/100

The Reds:

Wine Tasting Note: Borsao Vina Borgia Campo de Borja, 2004, Borja, Spain.
Handfords £4.95
Another wine that surprised all with how drinkable it was for the price. (The prices and names were only revealed at the end of the session). Handfords couldn’t be described as cheap overall (plenty of Spanish wines around the ?30 mark for example) but we found this on their shelves, down near the floor! Rich, smooth, some up-front sweetness, clean red berry acidity and softish tannins. Reasonably good length too. Dark cherry flavours abound. Grenacha grape aka Grenache with 13.4% alcohol.
Scribblings Rating – 90/100

Wine Tasting Note: Bodegas Joan Sangenis Juncosa ‘Cal Pla’, 2002, Priorat, Spain
Handfords £10.99.
For me the star of the reds. Dusty, brickie red in colour and a smoky edge, peppery, to the aroma. Lovely array of flavours across the palate, pepper again, but mangled in with dark red fruits, a sweet fruit edge and a great tannic structure. Went very nicely indeed with some spicy (cloves) meatballs in tomato sauce supplied by Ceclia of English Patis and also with peppers stuffed with a creamy cheese mixture made by the Cooksister.
Scribblings Rating – 92/100

Wine Tasting Note: Marques de Vagas Rioja Reserva, 2001, Rioja, Spain.
Handfords £16.99. And finally the Rioja – well you can’t do a Spanish wine tasting without a Rioja now can you! It was very good, perhaps though, it would benefit a year or two more in bottle; I felt it lacked a little complexity. As it stood it has a delicious savoury, tomato edge and good length. Alcohol 13.5%.

Scribblings Rating – 90/100

Wine Tasting Note: Gran Barquero Pedro Ximenez, NV, Montilla, Spain
Waitrose £6.49.
A stickie for the final wine; I was surprised how many had sampled a PX before. Pure liquid raisins, stickie, very sweet and rich. I really needed a chocolate cake to accompany but had to settle (slumming it!) with a blue veined cheese, again from Jenni, a Picos de Europa. I thought the wine would be too sweet and lacking in acidity to go well but it was a superb match.

Scribblings Rating – 90/100


1 Comment »

  1. Catavino says:

    Six Wines From Spain.

    Some good notes by Andrew over at Spittoon, on 6 Spanish wines. Looks like the meal was good too!Read all about them here.


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