The Grape Count

In Vino Veritas- "In Wine there is Truth"
Grapes to try to date: 200

Grapes tried: 104
Grapes to go:

Thursday, March 11, 2010

#8- Mourvedre

Move Over Dear. That's how one website artfully has you remember the name of the Mourvedre grape. The grape is considered an emerging grape so you'll likely hear about it more and more. It also goes by a couple of other names (think Syrah and Shiraz as an example) so it's also known as a Monastrell, Matero and Balzac grape.

The wine I was looking for was sold out at Liquor Select in Edmonton that carried this hard to find wine. Apparently it's on wine lovers' radar screens and I was out of luck to pick up a bottle from California. But as luck would have it, the store manager was pretty knowledgeable about wines and directed me towards a Spanish Monastrell wine she had in stock and quickly explained to me it was the same grape. Perfect! I was on my way.

The wine is from the Altos De La Hoya, Bodegas Olivares in Santa Ana, Spain. The vintage is 2006 and the bottle cost me $18.99. I bought it and headed over to my parents house who were having a little birthday celebration for my brother (happy 27th Craig!) and it was the closing of the Olympic closing ceremonies. A nice red would end our two weeks of showcasing our country to the world and a strong show of patriotism just nicely.

Chili was the order of the day for this meal. With the wine chilled to the right temperature for a red (yes, chill a red for about half an hour in the fridge) and the 42 inch television calling our name, I cracked open the bottle and poured ourselves a glass. The first thing I noticed (and only the second time I've had this), the wine had a black cork. I'm still not sure what to think about that. No matter, it doesn't affect the wine. At first, both Craig and I noticed a biting acidic taste to the wine and no wonder. On the grape varietal table, this grape is a superheavyweight and has very high acidity. We let the wine settle a bit and the bite wasn't as severe as dinner went on.

I really liked this wine. it was full of flavour and I found it very satisfying. What I mean by that is that I enjoyed how this wine played on my tongue. It was like all of my taste buds were busy figuring out this wine. There was a bit of an oak taste to it (from being aged in barrels), but it was not an overpowering taste. Craig, not being a red wine lover, especially enjoyed this wine and turned to me and said "I think I'm becoming a red wine lover, what's happening to?" You know it's a good red when...

I highly recommend this wine and I'm looking forward to getting my hands on that California Mourvedre that was out of stock. So the next time you're looking for a new red to try and don't mind a little acidity and bite to your wine, go grab a mourvedre.

On another note for any of you who live in Alberta, do you know that there is a website that helps you track down your favourite bottle of wine (and other sprits)? The website is the Alberta Liquor Guide and I use this site regularly to find those hard to fine wines. And you're welcome. The next grape on the list is one of my favourites- the Gewurztraminer.

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