French Grenache & Spanish Tempranillo

Two bottles, one from France the other from Spain, both delicious, an adjective I seem to use rarely but in this case it describes these reasonably priced wines perfectly.

Oldvinegrenache(450 x 600)The first is a Grenache from the Cotes du Roussillon and Muscat de Rivesaltes regions in the South of France, a ‘Old Vines Grenache Noir 2012’ and available at M&S for £7.99. An unoaked, fruit filled, soft, silky, almost port like beauty with light tannins, slight acidity, a hint of sweetness with a long finish, It also has a little complexity and depth which makes it an interesting drink . The only slight drawback is the hefty alcohol 14.5% which you certainly feel after a few sips.

This is a wine to savour and finish over a couple of evenings brilliant with food equally as good on it’s own.


Epototempranillo(450 x 600)Next is from Spain, from a traditional Bodega north west of Madrid but with a non traditional screw cap. The ‘Opoto Single vineyard Tempranillo 2010’– Wine Society £6.25.
Very deep crimson with aromas of cherries, strawberries, Vanilla and smokey ash.
Taste – Very fruity, quite tannic, with a real hit of sweet vanilla but with a hint of mint, Eucalyptus and chewy candle wax.

Typically Spanish tasting and you won’t be disappointed !


8corksMy Rating 8/10 Corks

Old Vines Grenache Noir M&S £7.99


8corksMy Rating 8/10 Corks

Opoto Tempranillo £6.25


The Society’s Southern Spanish Red 2012

society Jumilla(450 x 600)Jumilla, Spain, home to the richly flavoured Monastrell (aka Mourvedre) and the primary grape in this bottle of Southern Spanish Red Monastrell 2012 from the Wine Society.

The tasting notes that accompany the bottle (nice touch from the Wine Society) tell us that it’s from a relatively new family run Juan Gil Bodega who released their first vintage in 2003. The bottle in question is a entry level Spanish Monastrell and at £5.50, pretty cheap.


The first thing I would say after the initial taste is that this is nothing like a £5 bottle you might find on the supermarket shelf, this is very impressive and I must say a bit of a bargain.

When poured this is lighter than I expected with a rusty brownish tinge, aromas of sweet fleshy plums jump out of the glass along with bonfire ash (nicer smell than it sounds). I’ve drunk a lot of Monastrell lately especially on a recent visit to Murcia, Spain and on first tasting this is on a par with most of the wines there.

Taste – Sweet ripe plums, earthy and a little rustic, not particularly complex but it has good balance and a rough elegance about it but overall it’s very very drinkable.
This was my first bottle from a recent mixed ( 6 bottle) case order from the Wine Society, although mixed with four other Spanish reds, a German Riesling and a Corbieres.

It’s a pretty good start and a good first impression of the Wine Society itself which I only joined a few weeks ago, let’s hope it continues.

7.5corksMy rating 7.5/10 Corks

Wine Society £5.50 a bottle

Ondas Del Alma Godello & Vinahonda Crianza

Not quite Shakespeare but this is a ‘tale of two wines’ one from Galicia in north west Spain and the other from the Jumilla region on the southeast coast just north of Murcia.

godello coop(450 x 600)Firstly the Godello, I’m a big fan of this grape, almost extinct at one time now seems to be getting a reputation as being Spain’s ‘great white hope’ and in publisher and renowed wine expert Jancis Robinsons words “combines the structure of white burgundy with the finesse of a juicily mineral grape”. It also happens to be my current favourite Spanish white wine.
The Co Op have released their ‘Truly Irresistible’ range which includes this Godello Ondas del Alma 2012 which I bought on offer for £6.49.
Very, very pale looking in the glass with aromas of pear, peaches and cream.
Taste – Quite a creamy velvety taste, although still with a sharp, fresh acidic finish. Pears dominate with a hint of apples and peach. Great with food, cleansed the palate beautifully. Easy to drink, had this with some pork and mediterranean vegtables but it would probably suit fish dishes better. What I must point out is don’t chill this too much, initially I drank this far too cold, tasted much better when it warmed up a bit.

vinahonda2010(450 x 600)Next a wine I bought while browsing the duty free shop in Murcia airport. I’m not a great fan of airport duty free wine as there doesn’t seem to be as much of a saving, with a lot of the wines on show much cheaper if bought locally. Saying that this particular Vinahonda Crianza 2010 caught my eye and I decided to buy it at around 9 Euros. This is a blend of Monastrell , Cabrenet Sauvignon and Tempranillo.
Look & Nose – Bright ruby colour, intense complex aromas of fleshy rich cherries, spices, vanilla and chocolate. Taste – refined tannins, long finish, a little on the sweet side, Vanilla, smokey and a mild kick of spice.

Summing up, two pretty good wines, the Godello a little more easy to find here than the Vinahonda but if you are in the Murcia region of Spain the Monastrell is definitely worth checking out.

7.5corksTruly Irresistible Co Op Godello 2012

My Rating 8/10 Corks


8.5corksVinahonda Crianza 2010

My Rating 8.5/10 Corks