Wine region / Country
Guímaro 2016 (2 bottles)
Casal de Armán Blanco 2016 (2 bottles)
A Coroa 2016 (2 bottles)
Normal retail price: £63.40
Club Discount Price: £54.51
You save: £8.89 (14.02%)
Nevertheless, something seems to be changing: the minds of the young producers are bursting with knowledge, their hearts are brimming with passion, and tradition courses through their veins, while a land packed with untouched pockets of pure nature confidently claims its place amongst the great wines of Spain. Denominations such as Valdeorras, Ribeiro and the Ribeira Sacra have been making great strides regarding quality, followed closely by Monterrei, also eager to keep making improvements.
Our selection for this month, which we've called 'The bagpipe revolution' after their local popularity, is aimed at giving you a clear picture of the current state of Galician wine; by finding its roots in native varieties and the plurality of its soils, it has already succeeded in winning over many lovers of fine wine. From the slate-scattered soils of the Ribeira Sacra, Guímaro 2016 offers us the Mencía grape's most fresh and mineral side as a juicy and slightly smoky red, as befits the varietal grown here. Casal de Armán Blanco 2016 could well be the standard bearer for the Ribeiro's new wines, hailing from the Treixadura grape and granite soils, an austere and profound white that shows how this denomination can offer thrilling wines made from native grapes that have been well interpreted. To round off this trio of Galician wines, A Coroa 2016: what could be better than a white wine made from Godello grapes? One of the varieties that has most captivated some of the country's best winemakers and which demonstrates like no other the potential of the Valdeorras DO.
Galicia is making great strides and its wines seem the logical result of a global rise in temperatures and the international demand for fresh and expressive wines. The bagpipes are making themselves heard and loudly too, so how about hearing them clearly yourself?
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Young red. Guímaro Ribeira Sacra, Spain Mencia, Caiño Tinto, Sousón
Bottle: £7.95 club members / £9.25 non-members
Guímaro is firmly committed to age-old methods, such as fermentation with stalks and grape treading, wishing to keep traditions very much alive. In addition, it operates organically, limiting the use of chemical substances and working solely with used barrels, thus giving all the limelight to the magnificent grapes growing on the terraces of the Ribeira Sacra.
Guímaro is its young red, a wine of great vivacity, with its intense Picota cherry colour and tinted tears. Its nose is very elegant and fruit forward, with a definite dominance of cherry and blackberry aromas. It's very seductive on the palate, thanks to the sweet tannins and a mature body, and restrained as to the tannic element.
The contribution of Caiño and Sousón, native grapes from old vines planted on granite and slate soils, adds a very special mineral touch to the ensemble which makes this wine even more palatable if that's possible. The six months spent by the wine on its lees before bottling endow it with a delicate creaminess which, combined with an enviable freshness, result in the Guímaro being a truly delicious red. An honest and modest wine, but with bigger ambitions.
Barbecues / roasted pork / veal carpaccio
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Young white. Bodegas Casal de Armán Ribeiro, Spain Treixadura, Godello, Alvarinho
Bottle: £10.64 club members / £12.37 non-members
The vineyards that bring forth its grapes lie on terraces of granite and clay sand at an altitude of around 300 metres, bestowing a special character on the Casal de Armán wines. In the winery, a building alongside the old country house featured on the label, the most modern technology permits the essence to remain intact of grapes meticulously cared for and harvested by hand into small crates. The clusters are pressed without being destalked and the must ferments with a mixture of wild and selected yeasts, and afterwards rests in stainless steel on its lees. The winter cold will stabilise the wine naturally before it is bottled.
The result is a wine with a delicate nose that transports us to a meadow of yellow flowers and fennel. Its pleasant acidity brings to mind lemon peel and its complexity comes through gradually, but remains long in the memory. On the palate it exhibits good volume and a convincing depth, boasting balance and a clear-cut definition. Serious, fresh and subtle, it succeeds with every sip to raise the bar for the new wines of the Ribeiro denomination of origin.
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Young white. A Coroa Valdeorras, Spain Godello
Bottle: £8.67 club members / £10.08 non-members
The native Godello and the meticulous way the grapes are treated have been their distinctive hallmarks since the first vintage. Without these factors it would be impossible to give an explanation for a wine like A Coroa. Its nose is a basket of limes and lemons of exceptional aromatic purity. The freshness can be discerned at first sight, with its greenish colour and its suggestive brightness. The aromas of grape, nettle and ripe white currants come together with the herbaceous, floral and saline scents in a delicate but also intense perfume. On the palate it appears to close up aromatically, focusing on the bitter tones, as if it were an old Verdejo; its mouthfeel is what catches hold of the cheeks and powerfully caresses them, with the typical freshness of a good Galician wines. Tropical fruit and grapefruit notes emerging through the retronasal passage round off a wine that's brimming with character and typicity, a textbook Godello.
Grilled squid / mildly spiced Asian cuisine / orange fruit salad
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