Browse Tag

central spain

Rat finca

Finca Sandoval 2001 Manchuela (Central Spain) – 93% syrah, 7% mourvèdre. Giant, with both jam and tannin still quite dominant, but there’s balance here as well, and some really nice graphite starting to emerge. But while it improves with air, this is still extremely primary. (7/09)


Finca Sandoval 2004 Manchuela (Central Spain) – I’ve liked the lighter “Salia” on more than one occasion, but this…. Berry concentrate slurried into a concrete sludge with a barnyardy funk plus well-ridden horse. Oh, yum. There’s dense, peppery tannin, but otherwise this wine is formless and, despite the tongue-encasing texture, void of life; a solidified memory of fruit and animal preserved in amber. Obviously and by intent, it requires a whole lot of age but this is the absolute opposite of fun. (8/07)

Come Salia away

Finca Sandoval 2002 Manchuela “Salia” (Central Spain) – Leather, dark blueberry, and soft, wood-like smoothness that turns to cedar on the finish. Really quite lovely, with a texture that alternates between silk and satin. It’s fruit-forward, but it’s balanced, and rocks lurk underneath. A very compelling wine; not “great,” but probably not intended so. I like this much more than its more ambitious big brother. (10/06)

Here comes Montsant aClaus

Sin-Ley 2004 “G-2” Garnacha Montsant “Afinus” (Cataluña) – Very structured, with a ripe bisque of fine particulate lead forming a rich, velvety envelopment of tannin. The core isn’t much less thick, which dark plum and chokecherry dominating. This feels a lot like a Priorat, though it lacks the deformities (natural or artificial) that so often afflict the pricier, more cultish bottlings from that appellation. I think time will be very kind to this wine, but it has a certain sort of primary appeal now…though it will need something fleshy to battle back the tannin. (12/07)


Sin-Ley 2005 “G-5” Garnacha Vinos de Madrid “Puerta Bonita” (Central Spain) – Spontaneously refermented. (12/07)

TN: Arturo

[barrels]Finca Sandoval 2002 Manchuela “Salia” (Central Spain) – Medium-bodied and smoky, with earth-infused black fruit. Restrained and soft, but quite supple and tasty. A bottle tasted a few weeks earlier was a little more alive and less yielding, though it could be the context. (12/06)

TN: Bobby Castilla

Vinicola de Castilla “Señorio de Guadianeja” 1990 La Mancha Tempranillo “Gran Reserva” (Central Spain) – Old, sweaty oak, malted milk chocolate and rum. This is a big, heavy wine with decent acidity, very drying tannin (which feels like it comes primarily from wood), and an unpleasant finish of wood-derived vanilla and chocolate. A victim of its winemaking. (12/06)