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Atlantic Spain: It’s Always About the Weather…

featured, Spain

Josh Raynolds, Jun 2021

Stretching from Galicia in the far northwest and along the Atlantic Ocean and the Bay of Biscay to the Basque Country, Atlantic Spain is the country’s coolest winegrowing region. Mostly indigenous varieties that are grown virtually nowhere else in Spain are the rule. The almost universally ocean-influenced climate and the intrinsic character of those local grapes define vibrant wines that are increasingly capturing the attention of wine lovers across the globe.

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Rioja: The Past Is Always Present

featured, Spain

Josh Raynolds, Apr 2021

Change comes slowly in Rioja. Many of the winemaking practices that were in place when the region was established in the third quarter of the 19th century are widely used today. Grapes are pressed traditionally and most of the best wines are aged, sometimes for many years, in oak barrels of various sizes, with a preference towards American oak. Many winemakers see oxidation during aging as an asset, not a flaw, that when done correctly, brings the unique perfume, complex flavors and supple texture that make serious Rioja among the world’s greatest wines.

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Mediterranean Spain: Where to Start?

featured, Spain

Josh Raynolds, Mar 2021

In recent vintages, the Mediterranean wine-producing regions in Spain have produced a large number of outstanding wines. The range of wines influenced by the sea is staggering, from bone-dry bubblies to structured, world-class reds and some of the most decadent sweet wines in the world.

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The Vast Bounty of Central Spain

featured, Spain

Josh Raynolds, Feb 2021

While serious wine fanatics are well acquainted with Ribera del Duero, Toro and Rueda, much of the world consumes millions of gallons of wine a year made in the less lofty nearby regions, especially La Mancha and the far-reaching Castilla y León, both of which often deliver excellent value. Then there are unsung DOs like Campo de Borja, where readers will find some of the biggest bang-for-the-buck Grenache in the world.

Burgundy line up 1959

The Year of Jazz & Wine: 1959

Germany, featured, France, Spain, Verticals & Retrospectives

Neal Martin, Nov 2020

Two extraordinary 1959-themed dinners at the end of last year presented a mouthwatering opportunity to examine this legendary vintage. This article looks at those wines and some of the stories that lie behind them.

1899 blanco

Cellar Favorite: 1899 Marqués de Murrieta Rioja Blanco

cellar favorite, Spain, Cellar Favorites

Neal Martin, Aug 2020

This half-bottle of 1899 Rioja Blanco from Marqués de Murrieta concluded a memorable supper at Oswald’s private club in London just after the New Year, when a friend was visiting from East Asia.

Mas del serral 2009

Cellar Favorite: 2009 Pepe Raventós Mas del Serral

cellar favorite, Spain, Cellar Favorites

Neal Martin, Mar 2020

I met winemaker Pepe Raventós at a dinner for artisan Spanish winemakers at Noble Rot that preceded the Viñateros tasting this past February. We never met during my short tenure as reviewer, however it was his wines alongside those of Gramona, that blew apart my preconceptions of what Cava can achieve.

Cf 02182020

Cellar Favorite: 1959 Marqués de Murrieta Castillo Ygay Gran Reserva Especial Rioja

cellar favorite, Spain, Cellar Favorites

Antonio Galloni, Feb 2020

Rioja has always held a special place in my heart. I discovered pretty early on that l liked reds with bottle age, but I could hardly afford any of the heavy hitters of that time. Any time I needed a wine with a bit of age for a special occasion, it was always Rioja.

Casa camara turbot

Vinous Table: Casa Cámara, San Juan de Pasajes, Spain

Vinous Table, Spain

Neal Martin, Nov 2019

This is an institution that goes about its business in discreet fashion, doing what it has done for decades: serving delicious seafood and providing a memorable evening out.

Marques de riscal 1952 1964

Cellar Favorite: Marqués de Riscal Gran Reserva 1952-2015

cellar favorite, Spain, Cellar Favorites

Neal Martin, Oct 2019

It was a pleasure to take a break during a period of alternating between Bordeaux and Burgundy and attend a tasting of one of my favorite Rioja producers: Marqués de Riscal.