jamie goode's wine blog: Cano Cosecha 2004 Toro

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Cano Cosecha 2004 Toro

As I've said before, the world needs good, honest cheap wine. With this thought in mind, I'm quite excited by a wine I've been sipping over the last two evenings. It's a blend of Tempranillo and Grenache from the Toro region of Spain. It shows good concentration and has a nose of pure fruit (raspberry jam dominates), which leads to a vividly fruited palate where the sweet fruit is more than adequately countered by a savoury tannic bite. Significantly, there's no confected oak getting in the way of this brilliantly vibrant fruit. I guess if you are being picky you could say that the preferment cold maceration has led to a touch too much extraction, but I feel that the grippy tannins this gives actually balance the fruit rather well. The really good news? This delicious red, normally £4.49 at Tesco (a good buy at this price) is going to be £2.99 from 1-18 February. If you need a really satisfying, vibrant house wine, you'd be well advised to stock up. On Tesco's website, this will be just £2.50 a bottle. It's certainly the best sub-£3 wine I've ever tasted. The details: Cano Cosecha 2004 Toro, Spain (UK importer Bibendum Wine).

The wine itself is from super-coop Vina Bajoz in Toro. With around 140 members and over 1100 hectares of vineyards to play with, this is a big producer. But with attention to detail in both the vineyards and winery, this co-op seems to be producing excellent results. If more European co-ops follow suit (and there are a few I can think of that are now making excellent, market-focused wines at good prices), then the new world producers might have a fight on their hands.

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At 11:58 AM, Anonymous Jack Hibberd said...

Completey agree with you about the Toro. Cracking wine and one I drink regularly. I visited the winery earlier this year and had the feeling that they were slightly uncomfortable about the price it was selling for in Tesco: less (when duty differences are considered) than it goes for in Spain. Fill yer boots at the discount price.
Interestingly, the wines at Bajoz (very impressive installation by the way) almost got less interesting as they got more expensive. The top cuveé – Gran Bajoz or something – was overwhelmed with new oak. I go to Toro for its amazing liqorice-scented fruit and prefer just a dash of oak treatment (or micro-ox) to smooth out its (sometimes) rough edges. I don't want a Ribera del Duero clone. Unfortunately, it appears that heavily-oaked Toros are becoming more, not less, prevalent as the profile of the region rises.
I've got nothing against oak in Spanish wine and love heavily-oaked Riojas, Priorats, etc, but it would be nice for Spain to have a premium wine producing region that didn't base its repuation on time in the barrel.

At 2:04 PM, Blogger Jamie said...

Jack, agree about the oak. Using too much of it, or the wrong sort, seems to be a bit of a Spanish disease. I was half-expecting this one to be laced with rather sickly, confected vanilla and coconut oak, a bit like Durius (although I've heard rumours that they have recently started holding back on it...need to check this).

At 9:35 AM, Blogger suiko said...

Tried this, and no one could possibly deny it is a bit of a bargain. Interesting for me to find Garnacha in a Toro, as it's very much a minor grape there. This wine reminds me in fact of the host of great value Aragonese Garnachas about recently (El Burro at Sainsbury's, La Riada at Thresher) - it tastes to me like it's more than 25% Garnacha, but maybe that's because Tinta de Toro (Tempranillo) is not a terribly characterful grape.

I think the oak obession is starting to diminish in Spain these days. Part of this comes from the traditional relationship for the Spanish consumer of oak and quality of the Crianza/Reserva system that is responsible for the best Spanish wines - yep, we're talking López Heredia, of course - and then there is the - to my mind - far more questionable influence of Parker with the slatherings of new, largelyly French oak.

But for me Spain is offering the very best QPR for reds in the world today, real character for not much money. Only Languedoc-R can really compete, IMO.

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