Albariño series (3) Terras Gauda O Rosal 2017 Rías Baixas, Spain

Technically, I shouldn’t be including this wine in my series because it’s a blend, in this case of 70% Albariño, 20% Caiño and 10% Loureiro. Stainless steel fermented with vineyard yeasts carrying out the fermentation, this is a slightly richer style (O Rosal is a warmer subregion in Rias Baixas running along the border with […]

Gonzalez Byass Tio Pepe Fino En Rama - 2018 release

I’m really enjoying this. It’s the latest release of the Tio Pepe Fino En Rama. Now produced every year, this is Fino sherry fresh from the cask, and it has amazing flavour and aroma. [Read more about it in the links below if you aren’t familiar with the style.]

Gonzalez Byass Tio Pepe Fino En Rama […]

Raventós i Blanc Textures de Pedra Blanc de Negres 2013

This is a single vineyard wine from Raventós i Blanc. It’s Cava, but labelled as Conca del Rui Anoia because they were disappointed by the quality standards of most Cava producers. This wine is from Vinya Més Alta, which sits at the top of Turó del Serral, the hill on the 90 hecatare estate vineyard. […]

La Rioja Alta Gran Reserva 890 Selección Especial 2005

This isn’t the final label! An unlabelled advance sample.

The top wine of La Rioja Alta. It’s a blend of 95% Tempranillo, 3% Graciano and 2% Mazuelo, and the wine spends 6 years in barrel with 10 rackings (transferring the wine from one barrel to another, with the recipient barrel having been fumigated by a […]

The wines of Envinate, one of Spain's most exciting producers

Alfonso Torrente and Roberto Santana

Envinate is a really exciting project from Spain, focusing on making terroir-transparent wines from mainly Atlantic-influenced regions. It began in 2008 with four friends who’d studied enology together in Alicante: Laura Ramos, José Martinez, Roberto Santana and Alfonso Torrente. Laura and José work in Almansa and Extremadura, but the main […]

Daterra Viticultores, stunning wines from Laura Lorenzo in Ribeira Sacra

Laura Lorenzo, Daterra Viticultores

One of my discoveries of the 2018 edition of Simplesmente Vinho was the wines of Laura Lorenzo. Previously working with Dominio de Bibei, in 2014 she set out on her own to form Daterra Viticultores. She’s based in Manzaneda in the Bibei Valley, in Galicia’s Ribeira Sacra. While Ribeira Sacra isn’t […]

Wine writer buys wine! Shock! But which ones?

I had a case of wine delivered today. One that I paid for! Yes, occasionally we wine writers buy wine. Well, at least I do. Apart from anything else, a diet of samples (even good ones) isn’t healthy. How can you connect with readers who buy wine if you, as a writer, are never in […]

Albariño series (2) Granbazán Etiqueta Ámbar 2016 Rías Baixas, Spain

The second wine in this series on Albariño, that wonderful grape from northwest Spain and Portugal, is another from Rias Baixas. This one is a bit of a surprise: I picked it up from Oddbins tonight on the way home, and it’s packed in a very old-fashioned way. But it delivers lovely flavours.

Granbazán Etiqueta Ámbar […]

A lovely meal at DOP Porto with some nice wines

Had a great meal last night at DOP restaurant in Porto, with some really creative riffing on a Portuguese theme from Rui Paula. We began with a fruity scallop carpaccio, and then progressed to a beautifully cooked corvina (relative of sea bass) fillet with mango and coconut. These exotic flavours worked well, and this was […]

López de Heredia Viña Tondonia Reserva Blanco 2004

There’s something about López de Heredia, the ultra-traditional Rioja bodega. These are not easy wines, and require time. They are made in quite an oxidative way, and there’s no emphasis on fruit. But they are complex and intriguing, and their difficulty is part of their appeal, because they just age so well. This white Rioja is […]