the spanish aquisition


As much as Fino sherry, Rosado is a culturally specific drink in Spain. Light, dry and refreshing but also tasty and satisfying, Rosados are drunk widely. Drinkable at any and all times of the day, including simply all day, and going well with just about everything you'd eat, it's almost always Rosado-o'clock in Spain. Rosat is the same thing in the Catalan dialect.

La Purisima, D.O. Yecla

La Purisima is a sort of 'post-modern' co-op, doing some really sensational 'estate-style' wines from the township of Yecla, which gives its name to the denominacion de origen, D.O. Yecla.

'Estio' in Catalan means summer, and this range of wines refelects that ideal. The wines are fresh, bright and easy to enjoy.

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Cellars Capçanes, D.O. Montsant

Capçanes (pronounced Cap-sar-ness) is in DO Montsant, which surrounds the more famous and more expensive DOQ Priorat. The village of Capçanes is in the south-eastern corner of the Comarca Priorat. Capçanes is, and isn't, a co-op winery. Capçanes is both the name of a small Montsant village, south-east of the region's main town, Falset, and also the name of its wine co-op. 190 hectares (pre-phylloxera there were 1,000 ha of Capçanes under vine) are controlled by 75 growers and represents about 10% of the DO's total production. About half is organic, with more vineyards converted to such each year. Yields are as little as 12 hl/ha on the centenary Garnacha vines, which account for 55% of the co-ops holdings, and another 20% is Samsó.
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Cillar De Silos, D.O. Ribera del Duero

Up in the Northern hill-slopes of D.O. Ribera del Duero, rising out of the valley, the Aragon family have a couple of truly special patches of very gnarled old tempranillo vines, 60 and 80 years' age. Soil is slightly heavier and more minerally than the sandy valley floor, but heavy clay is avoided. These are wines of elegance and concentration; savoury with great earthy perfumes.

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Bertrand Sourdais, D.O. Ribera del Duero

'Antidoto' is the project of Bertrand Sourdais, who has a parallel existence running his family's Chinon property in the Loire Valley (Domaine de Pallus). Bertrand's partner in 'Antidoto' is David Hernando, a wine pro local to Soria, and working with his wife, Olga Escudero, Bertrand will soon release two wines under the 'Dominio de Es' label.

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Alegre y Valganon, D.O.Ca Rioja

Owned, grown and made by husband and wife team Oscar Alegre and Eva Valganon, La Calleja is a plot of 1.07 hectares planted 21 years ago when Eva was a little girl (she helped plant it). It is on her family's 16 hectare farm in Fonzaleche. This village of 80 people is situated in the very limit of la Rioja, way out west of Haro. It's north west of Cuzcurrita de Rio Turon, with which its wines share a sub-regional similarity. La Calleja is the last vineyard of the region as you depart towards Burgos (N232-A1).

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C.V.N.E. (Cune), D.O.Ca Rioja

Founded 1879 by the Real de Asua brothers (Raimondo and Eusebio) of Bilbao, C.V.N.E (hereafter, Cune, pronounced coo-nay) has been an integral part of the Rioja region's ascendance in the fine wine world. Early success came as a negociant house supplying bulk wine to a France devastated by phylloxera and oidium. Committing to a fine wine vision of Rioja, the brothers soon moved away from bulk wine shipping and began purchasing and planting vineyards around Rioja Alta and employed cellar masters from Bordeaux. The company is still run by a descendant of the Real de Asua brothers, the fifth generation current CEO Victor Urrutia Ybarra. Innovation combined with tradition has seen Cune become a consistently reliable sources for high quality Rioja wine.

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Casa da Passarella, D.O.C. Dão

Passarella is an estate founded in 1892, even before Dão was demarcated as a wine region in 1908, and hence are founders of the region. Having fallen into disrepair, Passarella was acquired, and restored, by Ricardo Cabral in 2007. Talented winemaker Paulo Nunes was appointed to restore the wine program.

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Quinta do Vallado, D.O.C. Douro

Quinta do Vallado, 30 minutes downstream from Pinhão, spreads along the banks of the Corgo River, where it meets the Douro. With references dating back to 1716, the property belonged to legendary D. Antónia Adelaide Ferreira and is now owned by the family's sixth generation.

Vallado has had Cristiano van Zeller consulting during its decade or so of modernisation: the shift from grower for the big Port houses, to high grade estate producer. A new gravity-fed winery was completed in 1997, and the 68 ha of vines (around 300m altitude) have been radically renovated. Parts of the vineyard are still young, aged between 6 and 10 years old. But the best plots, about 26 hectares are more than 60 years old.

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