A pure Cariñena from slate soils located at altitude, this is showing some development in the glass. It’s a little rustic perhaps, but there’s some attractive oak sweetness here, bright acidity, firmish tannins and plenty of fruit.
Celler Petit Emporda Tasting13 September 2013
2009 Celler Cooperatiu Espolla, Clos de les Dòmines, Empordà, Empordà( €10, 14.5% )
Grassy, concentrated blend of Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Cariñena from an ambitious co-operative. The tannins are a tad firm, but this is a serious, cassis-scented red with fresh acidity and a hint of greenness.
2011 Terra Remota, Camino, Empordà, Empordà( €15, 14% )
A stylish, well-balanced blend of Grenache, Syrah, Tempranillo and Cabernet Sauvignon couched in an international style. Aromatic, raspberry and bramble fruit with sweet vanilla oak, bright acidity and smooth tannins.
2009 Terra Remota, Usted, Empordà, Empordà( €100, 15% )
Very serious, very ambitious, but so it should be at the price. This blend of Syrah and Grenache shows flavours of sweet red fruits, vanilla spice and liquorice with stylish, smooth tannins, superb balance and a slightly dry finish.
2011 Jordi Oliver, Joc Negre, Emporda, Empordà( €7.50, 14.5 )
A Rhône meets Bordeaux blend, via Emporda of course, this is a four-way cuvée of Garnatxa, Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc. Floral and nuanced, with subtle red fruits that nod towards Pinot Noir, despite the alcohol, backed up by minerality and balance. Drink it chilled.
2008 Oliveda, Furot Reserva, Empordà, Empordà( €12, 13% )
A feral, slightly chewy blend of Cabernet, Grenache and Merlot with tannins that are too pronounced for the fruit. A twist of the pepper grinder adds interest here, but this would have been better two years ago.
2008 Mas Romeu, Finca Malesa, Empordà, Empordà( €16, 15% )
Made by Delfi ?, Perelada’s head winemaker, on a consultancy basis, this cuvée of Grenache and Merlot is savoury and sweet, with warming alcohol and some attractive green pepper and balsamic notes.
2012 Coop Agricola Garriguella, Essència de Gerisena, Emporda, Empordà( €7, 16.5% )
Youthful, fortified Muscat showing a hint of spirit and floral, grapey fruit flavours. An easy-drinking, dessert style that would work well as an aperitif.
2011 Celler d’en Guilla, Rec de Brau, Emporda, Empordà( €8, 15% )
A turbo-charged Samsó (Cariñena) and Garnatxa blend with deep colour and evident oak on the nose. Dense, wild and herby, with plenty of thyme and rosemary flaovurs, firmish, food friendly tannins and dark, brambly fruit.
Try this with a juicy steak or a leg of lamb.
2007 Arché Pagès, Cartesius, Empordà, Empordà( €11, 15.5% )
The alcohol is a little high here, but this cuvée of Grenache and Cabernet has aged extremely well, showing notes of wild herbs, mint and sweet red fruits with a subtle undertone of oak. Very stylish, very drinkable.
2010 Can Sais, Selecció, Baix Empordà, Empordà( €15, 15% )
A Merlot, Grenache and Tempranillo blend showing some reduction and slightly baked, extracted aromas and flavours. A little chewy and dry, this is a wine that needs more fruit sweetness for balance.
2005 Coop Agricola Garriguella, Dolç de Gerisena, Emporda, Empordà( €10, 16.5% )
Mature, full-flavoured blend of Garnatxa and Cariñena, showing rich, liquoricey fruit flavours, notes of dried figs and herbs, some spirit and a fiery finish. Dry and a little too hot, this should be drunk now.