Geekiest Flight Anywhere with Garnacha on 4 soil types

Its back and twice as fun as before!! A few year's back we discovered Capcanes, a winery in Montsant which is 100 miles southwest of Barcelona, 20 miles inland from the Mediterranean sea, with a long wine growing history dating back to the middle ages. Despite this traditional foundation they do one of the most fun and intriguing garnacha bottlings we've ever seen. Imagine 4 vineyards where the ripe Grenache/Garnacha is picked at the same ripeness, all are fermented in controlled temperatures and macerated for 28 days. All see 4 months in French oak, in fact the only true difference is each vineyard is dominated by a different soil type.

Some of you may remember when we were lucky enough to have the Slate (Llicorella) and Limestone versions of these wines a few years ago. Well we cajoled and begged and pleaded and we just received not only the Slate and Limestone, but also the Clay and Sand versions!

 

The sand soil here is honeycombed from eroded beaches and arid desert, deep roots push through to find concntrations of lime. This is the most acidic soil in the area. The clay soil is found in the old lake basins, compact without oxygen where the plants desperately strive to find the filtered water. Clay is of medium or average acidity. The limestone soils are not very acidic featuring fragmented, calcified, ancient crustaceans. This soil is loose but so loose that water isn't held at all forcing the roots deeper and deeper underground. Lastly the famous Priorat Llicorella dominates the slate soil type and dominates the top layer in these vineyards. This rock is formed during ancient volcanic times in a high pressure environment, deep within the earth's crust, forming laminate like layers during its formation process. This is very acidic soil.

capcanes bush vined garnacha

 

So does all of this matter? Can you tell a difference? The bio-chemists like to say it's impossible, and us wine geeks are just making this up. They have not found the mechanism or process by which soil is represented in finished wine, so we must be full of it. You will have to decide for yourself, try a flight of all four wines side by side and savor this unique experience! We sure are!


Orchard Wine Cellar Movers and Shakers This Week

  • Tintero Moscato

    #1 Tintero Moscato

    Sori Gramella refers to the one of the only single vineyard Moscatos, and Marco is the only producer to bottle this striking limestone amphitheater commercially. Once the 30 year old vines give up their bounty, and the grapes are harvested and pressed, they are kept in stainless steel at a low temperature to prevent fermentation until an order is received in order to provide the freshest wine possible.
    (Holding the #1 spot)

  • tip top old fashion

    #2 tip top old fashion

    (behind by 10 bottles)

  • Armas de Guerra Rose

    #3 Armas de Guerra Rose

    My heavens! 50+ year old, organic Mencia vines from some of the highest vineyards in Bierzo. Subtle aromas of strawberry, pink grapefruit and white pepper play with clean river rock minerality touched by zesty key lime. Balance and finish are tied together with a vibrating acidity. Structured and executed like a world class ballerina doing flamenco. Sells out every year for good reason. Lighter than Provence, a different planet than White Zin. The only hard part is only opening one bottle at a time. (behind by 2 bottles)

  • Hunky Dory Tangle

    #4 Hunky Dory Tangle

    This white blend is unlike your usual NZ Sauv Blanc, an organic blend of Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Gris, Gewurztraminer and Riesling done quite dry. Shows honeysuckle, white peach and clean stone on the nose with flavors of apple peach and rose petals. The acid is softer and rounder than sav blanc but crisper than most any Gewurz or Riesling you may have had. Yes, it really is "hunky dory". (behind by 15 bottles)

Fun New Arrivals

  • Chateau Redortier Beaumes de Venise

    Chateau Redortier Beaumes de Venise

    Wine geeks know of Gigondas and Vacqueras that show off Grenache like no other. Bordering both is Beaumes de Venise which is known for fortified Muscat. On a steep hillside (at 1500 ft!) twin sisters Sabine and Isabelle make this earthy, spicy blend of Grenache, Syrah and Counoise. A gorgeous wine.

  • Maimai Syrah

    Maimai Syrah

    So pretty. Brings a clear nose of Gimblett Gravels terroir beneath lush soft blue and black fruit with lovely violet and lavender notes. Palate is clean, balanced and very approachable. Just a hint of the Northern Rhone's meatiness but mostly bright fruit and enough acidity to hold it in check. Maybe the best NZ Syrah out there??

  • Porron Decanter

    Porron Decanter

    The porron wine pitcher is a festive way to serve wine. Either use as a decanter or just pick up the porron and tilt it so that a thin stream of wine pours directly into your mouth! It takes some skill, but it is fun at a party to see how well you and your friends master the technique. Each porron holds 1 liter, which is a perfect size to hold a bottle of wine.

  • Obsidian Cab

    Obsidian Cab

    A wonderful classic CA Cab with solid structure from the altitude and Hungarian oak. Reserved and dark on the nose with aromas of blackberries, hints of black licorice and coffee. Really nice and elegant. Touch on the masculine side with no jammy, jelly jar junk here. Wonderfully different.