Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Wine Class #16- Spain and Portugal

Time to catch up on our adventures in wine!  Last week we moved to the regions of Spain and Portugal.  So those of you I know going to Spain soon (there's really only one that I know of), listen up!  I'm not lucky enough to travel there with you, but at least I can give some tips on wine!

Wines of the week:
A Priorat
A Rias Baixas

A white Rioja
A Rioja- or as many know it
as- Tempranillo

A Jumilla
A red wine from Portugal

This class was probably my second favorite thus far.  Spain and Portugal mix the tastes of the Old World (i.e. France and Italy) with the Modern World of wine.  

My favorite was the Jumilla.  It's made from Monastrell grapes and smells a bit like Gingerbread and is a moderate wine- not too dark and tanniny like the Rioja.

Rioja, or Tempranillo is a deep, rich wine somewhat like a mix of Pinot Noir and Cabernet.  It is delicious, but is best with a meal.

The White Rioja was my favorite white of the night.  It's similar to a Sauvignon Blanc, with a citrusy taste and smell.

Rias Baixas was a medium body white wine, that smelled of stone fruit (peaches, plums).

Priorat is a blend of Garnacha and Carinena grapes.  It's a very full bodied wine, high in alcohol and has the  quintessential smells and tastes of Grenache- licorice- which is probably why I'm not a huge fan of Grenache, I've never liked licorice.

Finally, the red wine from Portugal, this is a blend of many grapes and also smelled of licorice, but not as strong as the Priorat.

The weather has been so warm lately, which called for some lighter, crisps wines.  I went back a couple classes and picked up one of my favorites from the Rhone Valley- Tavel, the Rose.  I loved it again!  It's like a Syrah wine that's lighter, crisper and more refreshing on a warm day.  A must try!

As for Adam and I, we just enjoyed a long weekend with his parents here in Denver, and we are headed out tomorrow for our much anticipated trip to Florida.  Cannot wait for the warm-shorts weather, a pool in the backyard and time to R.E.L.A.X.

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