A taste of Spain in North Carolina

February 25, 2008 at 1:08 pm Leave a comment

I had a brilliant idea for an activity on Saturday night – a wine tasting.  My original plan was to check out some of the wines that will be available on my cruise this summer to see if I should buy a Wine & Dine Package.  At Total Wine, a helpful employee showed me the error of my ways.  He said that the proper way to do a wine tasting is to offer several selections that have been chosen to compliment each other.  He offered to pick out 5 bottles, each under $15, for my group of 11 tasters.  I agreed, and he picked out 5 bottles of Spanish reds, numbered them, and printed out some information about them for me.

The Set Up
I had a spit bucket (actually my nice silver champagne bucket!  Jason was horrified lol), a pitcher of water, a variety of wine glasses (drat! I only have 3 that are red wine glasses; need to do something about this), and wine charms (we went out for dinner after the tasting; the charms allowed people to find their glasses again when we returned to finish the wine).  We also had a selection of crackers, Liebniz butter cookies (awesome; I want to eat 203478297597 of them), sharp cheddar cheese, and Havarti cheese.  I think people really shouldn’t have been trying to taste the wine over those cheeses – the Havarti is especially delightful (and distracting!).

The Wines
Castell Del Remei Gotim Bru (2003, $11.99)
This was a blend of 50% Tempranillo, 25% Merlot, and 25% Cabernet Sauvegnon.  It’s a very deep ruby colored medium bodied wine that tastes of black cherries and light tannin.  This one might have been my favorite.

Ercavio La Mancha Tinto Roble (2005, $10.99)
This deep purple, full-bodied wine was spicy with tobacco, blueberry, and blackberry in the nose.  I thought it was a complex wine with so many flavors, but what do I know?  I liked it.

Castano Yecla Hecula Tinto (2004, $11.99)
This intense, medium-bodied wine exhibited some intense tannin (dried out my tongue!).  It’s rich with aromas of toasty black fruits and milk chocolate.  This was a favorite of several tasters.

Capcanes Montsant Mas Donis Barica (2004, $14.99)
This full-bodied wine…  well, it smelled kind of awful!  Like pencil lead!  But that was kind of funny.  It didn’t taste like a pencil, so most in the group enjoyed the hints of spicy black fruits, nicely concealed tannins, and long finish.

Valserrano Rioja Crianza (2004, $12.99)
This full-bodied wine was spicy with hints of berries and vanilla.

I think everyone had a good time exploring Spanish wines a bit.  I’d love to do this again sometime!  I am too cheap to do this very often, but I’m sure I’ll do it again eventually.

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Entry filed under: Travel by Food.

Destination Friday: More about eating in London TTT: More on travel to Cuba

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