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The Cellar: Spanish Wines Under $10

Friday, January 25, 2013


Spanish wines are always a good option for any table, but this bottle is an absolute steal at $10. Photo: flydime/flickr.

It's a big wine weekend coming up, as tickets remain on sale for this Sunday’s Grand Tasting at Mohegan Sun’s 2013 Sun WineFest. Don’t let this opportunity to sample over 1,000 different wines and specialty spirits pass you by. Allow your inner foodie to come out and sample signature dishes from the region's most highly rated restaurants, as well as celebrity chefs Robert Irvine, Donatella Arpaia and Todd English.

2013 Sun WineFest

If you want something truly special consider purchasing a ticket for Saturday’s Elite Cru Tasting. This ticket, which includes a Saturday Grand Tasting ticket, is an extraordinary opportunity to discover

the "best-of-the-best" vintages from around the world and to meet the winemakers and principals behind them. Or head down for Sunday evening’s Bubbles & Bon Bons event at the Cabaret Theatre where the decadent desserts from talented pastry chefs Dorie Greenspan, Mindy Segal and Gesine Bullock-Prado are paired with Moet Imperial Champagne and Grand Marnier.

If you can’t make this weekend’s event, you should consider signing up for the next ‘Evening with Wine’ event at the Providence Wine Academy where participants will be learning about (and taste) the interesting and diverse sparkling, still and fortified wines of Spain and Portugal. While the following wine didn’t make the final list, it is a delicious and great value I thought deserved praise.

2009 Bodegas Volver 'Tarima Hill' Monastrell, Alicante, Spain

One of Spain’s most exciting wine regions is Alicante located in the southeastern part of the country. More often than not the red wines from Alicante are great values – made primarily, if not

exclusively, from a grape varietal called Monastrell. By the way, Monastrell is the same varietal as Mouvedre which is grown in France’s Rhone Valley and Provence and makes up the ‘M’ in Australia’s GSM wines (alongside Grenache and Syrah).

This week’s example was awarded 92 points(!) by Robert Parker. How they make wine from hand harvested organic grapes, from low-yielding vines - wines that are aged for 20 months in 100% French oak - for only ten bucks? - is astounding. Bodegas Volver has done it with their 2009 Tarima Hill Monastrell, which displays big, luscious, ripe dark fruits with a dusty earthiness and smoke, soft tannins with hints of sweet oak on the finish. This is a crowd pleaser and a great example of what Monastrell can brings to the table.


Steffen Rasch is a Certified Sommelier and Specialist of Wine. Feel free to email him at [email protected] with any wine-related question.


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