In our never ending search for new wines at great prices we sometimes come across interesting wine stories that are big news in other parts of the world but are not necessarily on everyone’s minds here in our corner of the globe.
The Ca N’Estruc wines from Can Dez Mas have not yet made a significant impression on many American wine drinkers, but are very much on the minds and in the glasses of the Spanish press and public.
The winery and its 65 acre vineyard, located near Barcelona in a little village called Esparraguera, date back to the 19th century. In 1996, owner Francisco Marti along with celebrated winemaker Álvaro Palacios and Barcelona wine merchant Quim Vila re-tooled the blends and lowered the prices to attract the local market. The wines were well received by the public as well as the press and now are well known throughout Spain. The Ca N’Estruc red and white wines are just becoming available here in our market. These intriguing blends are delicious, well made and well priced.
Also, this week we offer some new wines in our ‘under $15’ section as well as some new choices for our ‘house wine’ selections. In case you missed our earlier description of these fabulous values, it goes something like this:
“We have created a special section of youthful, traditionally styled wines (like what you would get in a typical Spanish bar) that retail for $6.99. These wines don’t demand too much attention, don’t cost too much yet are versatile and flavorful. They are cheap enough to buy by the case, but good enough to drink on a regular basis. Individually these wines are already inexpensive. The standard 10% discount for full case purchases would normally bring the price down to $6.30 per bottle. With these particular wines we will offer a special discounted price of $5.99 per bottle with 12 bottle purchase.”
Palacio Menade RS Cuvee 2005 $6.99 Our latest ‘house wine’ is this D.O. Rueda region white, a blend of 80% Verdejo, 15% Viura and 5% Sauvignon Blanc. Bold floral aroma encounters bright acidity to create a citrusy wine with flinty background. Excellent value!
Ca N’Estruc Blanc 2006 $9.99 A crisp, herbaceous blend of 83% Xarel-lo, 12% Macabeo and 5% Chardonnay. The Peñin Guide said this about the 2005 vintage. “Straw colored. Fruity nose with musky notes and hints of fresh fruit, herbs. Powerful palate, fresh and flavoursome, with excellent varietal character, good acidity. 87 Points.” (I should mention that a score of 87 in Spain is like a score of 90 here)
Ca N’Estruc Idoia Blanco 2006 $16.99 We do not carry many barrel fermented white wines. This one is definitely worth investigating. The blend here is 40% Xarel-lo, 30% Macabeo and 30% Chardonnay. The Peñin guide described the 2005 vintage as “Straw coloured. Fresh, fruity and smoky nose, elegant, fragrant herbs (lavender, apple). Fresh palate with fruity and varietal expression, flavoursome with bitter traces, alcohol and acidity well balanced. 91 points.” I didn’t know that apple was an herb, but they sure do like this wine, as do we.
Artadi Orobio Blanco 2005 $10.99 (was $14.99) This delicious dry white Rioja is now an excellent value as well. Made from the Viura grape, this lean citrusy white displays aroma of fresh herbs and a firm mineral foundation. An excellent wine to serve with cheese.
Tikalo Rubens 2005 $9.99 was $11.99 This traditional unfiltered Tempranillo displays youthful character and ripe fruit as well a dry earthy quality that is typical of the La Mancha region where it is produced. Serve Rubens Tempranillo with burgers on the grill to turn the simplest of meals into a sublime experience.
Luan Equis $8.99 was $10.99 This wine is an unfiltered blend of 40% Bobal, 20% Merlot, 10% Syrah, 10% Garnacha, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon, and 10% Tempranillo. Equis combines dry, earthy foundational aromas and flavors with bright, youthful fruit character. An excellent, very Spanish tasting bargain.
Ca N’Estruc Idoia Negre 2004 $16.99 A blend of several grapes including 50% Syrah, 40% Cabernet Sauvignon and 10% mixed Petit Verdot, Tanat and Merlot. Structured and spicy with wild herb aromas and flavors. The Peñin Guide awarded this wine 91 Points (few wines in the Peñin Guide ever get over 90 Points). They said “Intense cherry. Aroma with good fruit expression (fresh fruit, varietal character) and fine toasty notes. Medium-bodied, fresh palate with fine toasty flavours and excellent acidity, easy drinking, elegant and very fruity with toasty oak.” Oh, and did we mention toasty?