Cristall Wine Merchants have recently added some interesting new Spanish wines to their list. The two reviewed here particularly caught my eye. One is from the lesser-known Yecla DO which is one of several Spanish regions showing striking improvement in recent years. The other is from Rioja, Spain’s most prestigious wine region. The grapes are sourced exclusively from the superior vineyards found in Rioja Alta. Though contrasting in style, each provides a good examples of the quality to be found in Spain in this price range.
Bodegas Castano Solanera Vinas Viejas 2012, Yecla DO 14.5% $27.99 Cristall Wine Merchants, Sunnyside Mall, Bedford 70% Monastrell with 15% each of Garnacha Tintoro and Cabernet Sauvignon and aged in oak for 10 months, this is a softly perfumed wine showing delicious dark berry and blackcurrant fruit, peppery spice, supple, but lightly firm tannins, good overall balance and a light splash of chocolate on the finish. ***
The Invisible Man 2011, Rioja DOC 13.5% $24.99 Cristall Wine Merchants Deeply scented berry fruit on the nose shows developed vinosity, with muted spicy overtones. Pleasantly sweet ripe raspberry and blackberry flavours are supported by firm tannic structure with medium weight, a touch of dark chocolate and a blackcurrant note kicking in on the finish. The fine fruit character makes it drinkable now with food but will improve further with a couple of additional years in the cellar. ***
Cristall’s current “Hot Buys” are available at reduced prices until March 29th
Having been away for a while, I have not had the chance to taste some of them but can recommend Chateau Platon Rouge Bordeaux AC $13.99 ($3 off) and Oggi Primitivo $11.99 ($2 0ff). It is hard to go wrong with either offering at these prices. Ch. Platon is a clean, well-made medium weight wine and the Oggi Primivo is a full-bodied concentrated dark fruit style from the South of Italy.
Cristall is also offering a “March Break Survival Kit.” It includes Rosemount Shiraz Grenache, 2012, Southeastern Australia; Alvarez de Toledo Godello, Spain and Saxenburg Guinea Fowl Red, South Africa as well as 3 local Craft Beers, Boxing Rock Vicars Cross; Propeller Pilsner and North Brewing Belgian IPA. All six items are bundled in a re-usable cloth bag for $64.99.