Wine Blogging Wednesday #35

This is the second Wine Blogging Wednesday (WBW) since I started this blog last month. My first WBS was perfect for a Washington state wine blog — the topic was Washington state Cabs. This month, WBW is about Spanish wine that costs about (give or take) $10. Not an easy task for someone who writes about Washington state wine!

But I love the idea of wine bloggers around the world writing on a set date about a specific type of wine, so I hope you understand why I am not writing about Washington state wine today. And  thanks to Michelle at My Wine Education who is hosting WBW this month. Stop by her blog to read everyone’s comments.

So let’s get to it.  I tried five Spanish wines between $15-$20 at a special tasting provided by Cavatappi Distribuzione, a wholesale wine distributor in Seattle: 2006 Lagar de Cervera Albarino; 2005 Balbas Tinto Roble; 2003 Casa de la Ermita Crianza; 2001 Valdelosfrailes Seleccionada Crianza; and 2005 Flor Del Montgo Old Vine Monastrell.

The only white wine, the 2006 Lagar de Cervera Albarino, is ideal to sip icy cold on a hot summer evening. According to Jeff from Cavatappi, this Albarino is one of the best in northwest Spain, where the rainy climate is similar to Washington state. The 2006 Lagar de Cervera Albarino “has been rated 90 or above by all the major wine publications,” said Jeff. This golden wine has an orchard fruit flavor with a spicy, long finish.

My favorite wine at the tasting was 2001 Valdelosfrailes Seleccionada Crianza–100% Tinta del Pais (Tempranillo) from Cigales in north-central Spain. This region has sandy, limestone soil and vastly different temperatures during the day and night, “allowing the vines to lie dormant during the night and to absorb the maximum amount of nutrients during the day.” The result is a complex wine that would nicely pair with either strong cheeses or lamb.

One final wine: I’m only going to mention Rioja because everyone knows Rioja and because my local grocery chain doesn’t have a great selection of Spanish wine. I tried Marques de Caceres 2003 Rioja Crianza Red, which has a bright ruby color and is very fruity with a smooth finish. It was pleasant for an affordable wine– it cost $11.99 on sale.

When I checked online, prices ranged from a low $8.99 to a high $15.99. An online review called it an elegant, outstanding wine, but I disagree. It was not even remotely as elegant as most Washington state wines.

See, I ended talking about Washington state wines after all! Cheers!