The emergence of high-quality white wines from Spain, long-regarded almost exclusively as a red wine producer, may well turn out to be the winemaking story of the decade. Yet, many of Spain's most successful New Wave white wines, most notably, Albariño, have decidedly austere flavor profiles, which can be challenging to those just discovering the new world of high caliber Spanish whites. That is most certainly not a concern with Verdejo, the signature grape variety of the northwestern Spanish region of Rueda. The 2012 Valdrinal de Santamaria Rueda, which is made from 100% Verdejo, it is a real crowd pleaser. Made by Bodegas Surco, which also produces a bevy of prestigious Ribera del Duero red wines, the Valdrinal de Santamaria Rueda offers plush, luxurious, almost unctuous flavors of pear, stone fruit and yellow apple, with an intriguing hint of tangerine in the background. The bold fruit flavors are nicely backed up by the fresh, vibrant acidity that has become the calling card of the best New Wave Spanish whites. I found this wine delightful ,and an outstanding value as well.-Ben Giliberti, CW Director of Wine Education
The 2011 Bodegas Zerran Tinto, which comes from the heretofore obscure region of Montsant, is the latest discovery of Jorge Ordonez, who has been ferreting out great, undiscovered values from Spain’s incredible diversity of regions for well over a decade. Located in the northeast corner of Spain, Monstant borders the well-known Priorat region, and benefits from same combination of proximity to the Mediterranean s ea, along with an excellent, well-drained soils. A blend of Grenache, Mazuelo and Syrah, Zerran come from gnarly old vine vineyards planted between 1934 and 1942, at an elevation of 1,500-1,800 feet. An excellent value, this wine received an impressive 92 point score from Robert Parker.
Spain remains the world-class leader when it comes to offering consumers a fair shot at finding stylish, food friendly red and white wines wines at affordable prices. This collection, drawn from Spain's prime growing regions, consists of 5 hearty reds, and one exceptionally refreshing white.The 6 Bottle Sampler comes in a handy, reusable container with one bottle each of the following wines:Rio Madre 2012 (Rioja)Valdrinal de Santamaria 2012 (Rueda)Viña do Campo Mencia 2012 (Ribeiro)Castillo de Jumilla Monastrell-Tempranillo 2012 (Jumilla) Montebuena 2010 (Rioja)Finca del Castillo Tempranillo 2011 (La Mancha)
From the portfolio of the peripatetic Eric Solomon, who has a gift for finding super-values from all over the globe, the 2011 Hazaña Rioja Tradicion offers a subtly updated and freshened take on the classic Rioja formula. Pair this well-balanced Rioja with tapas, salmon, grilled meats, and poultry.