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Categories: Garnatxa d’Empordà, Rancio Sec/Vi Ranci, Vermouth

While France and Italy are often recognized for their diversity in all matters culinary and vinous, Spain is too often overlooked in these regards, viewed as a monolith, despite the distinct regional and cultural differences within that are reflected in its gastronomic and winemaking traditions. Occupying most of the Iberian peninsula, it extends from the Pyrénées in the northeast to Gibraltar in the southwest, just nine miles from Africa. The country’s regional diversity is reflected in its wines, which range from light, dry whites in the cool Atlantic regions of the north; traditional and modern expressions of Tempranillo extending west from Rioja; and the robust, Monastrell-dominated wines of the Levante. While Catalunya led successive Spanish winemaking revolutions in the late eighties and early nineties, it continues to honor its heritage and traditions, including Vermut de Reus as well as its taste for the gentle, oxidative rancio wines that reflect some of the world’s oldest forms of winemaking. That revolutionary spirit has likewise finally arrived in Andalusía and the Marco de Jerez, where a new generation of winemakers engage traditional bodegas to both question and renew the spirit of one of the world’s most complex wines, Sherry.

    Vermouth
    Timbal Vermut de Reus Extra Dry

    Timbal Vermut de Reus Extra Dry

    SpainCatalunyaVermut de Reus 17.0% ABV

    17.0% ABV

    This vermouth has a distinctly Catalan character, and embodies many of the savory flavors found in the famed olives of the region. Truly dry—with no added sugar—it is made with herbs sourced from the Pyrenees mountains and citrus of the Mediterranean. Its wine base of Airén (La Mancha) and Macabeo (Penedes) adds a nice minerality. Enjoy neat, with a splash of tonic, or in a 1:1 Martini. The town of Reus (near Tarragona in Catalonia) is the historic epicenter for vermouth production in Spain, where for over a century the producer Miró has set the benchmark for its wormwood-forward style. All production is today overseen by the family patriarch Pere Miró. Full details

    Timbal Vermut de Reus Extra Dry
    Timbal Vermut de Reus Extra Dry
    Timbal Vermut de Reus Sweet Red

    Timbal Vermut de Reus Sweet Red

    SpainCatalunyaVermut de Reus 15.0% ABV

    15.0% ABV

    This well rounded and wormwood-forward sweet red vermouth has earned great admiration. Its easy style is ideal for the Catalan tradition of the ‘vermouth hour’, enjoying a glass on the rocks with olives. Timbal Sweet Red also marries beautifully with rye or bourbon, revealing notes of baking spices. The town of Reus (near to Tarragona in Catalonia) is the historic epicenter for vermouth production in Spain, where for over a century the producer Miró has set the benchmark for its wormwood-forward style. All production is today overseen by the family patriarch Pere Miró. Full details

    Timbal Vermut de Reus Sweet Red
    Timbal Vermut de Reus Sweet Red
    Rancio Sec/Vi Ranci
    Espodol Vi Ranci Sec NV

    Espodol Vi Ranci Sec NV

    SpainCatalunya 14.0% ABV

    14.0% ABV • Fully Oxidized, Oxidative

    While the tradition of Vi Ranci and Rancio sec has survived on both sides of the French-Spanish Catalan border, the large majority of those now produced in Spain are fortified. Espodol Vi Ranci Sec is the rare unfortified expression: Old-vine Garnatxa blanca and Garnatxa rosat, hand-harvested and fermented under the rafters in epoxy-lined concrete tanks. After two years, a portion of the slowly oxidizing wine is transferred to large wooden foudres (where it remains for 3-4 years), and then into a six-tier solera of demi-muids that was originated in 1950. Full details

    Espodol Vi Ranci Sec NV
    Espodol Vi Ranci Sec NV
    Garnatxa d’Empordà
    Espodol Solera Garnatxa d’Empordà NV

    Espodol Solera Garnatxa d’Empordà NV

    SpainCatalunyaEmpordà DO 15.5% ABV

    15.5% ABV • Fortified, Oxidative

    The Celler Espolla’s Solera Garnatxa is considered amongst the finest and most prominent of its tradition in Catalunya. Ripe, passerillé Garnatxa blanca and rosat grapes are harvested by hand and fermented with native yeasts in concrete tank. The fermentation is arrested via mutage, and the wine begins a lengthy, oxidative odyssey through a six-tier solera that was inaugerated in 1931. Dark amber, seamless and layered, it shows dried apricot and cherry, roasted hazelnut and sweet/smoky baking spices. Enjoy with a wide variety of cheeses and desserts. Once opened, it will keep well for 6-8 weeks. Full details

    Espodol Solera Garnatxa d’Empordà NV
    Espodol Solera Garnatxa d’Empordà NV