Holiday season is upon us again - how did that happen so fast?! And so we've pulled out a collection of six bottles that we think will help you navigate the festive season in classic Movida style. Bright, energetic wines from some of the best producers in the Iberian Peninsula all chosen with an eye towards warmer weather, long afternoon light and pairing with a salty little tapa too. Usually these six bottles would retail for $240.00 so this pack is a bit of a steal at $195.00.
Headlining this pack is a new producer - Cesar Marquez of Bierzo - who's wines have only just arrived in Australia. The sixth generation of his family to grow grapes in Bierzo, there's no one with a deeper understanding of the native red grape Mencia. Cesar's wines are crisp, darkly fruited reds that sit in a Pinot-Gamay weight spectrum. Exactly the shape we think you'll be aiming for on a sunny afternoon with the barbecue raging.
Obviously a summer pack needs white things to sip on too, we just got excited by new wine from Cesar so we put him first! But really where we should kick this pack off is the brilliant new vintage of Louro from Rafael Palacios. Louro has become a stalwart on our wine lists in recent years thanks to it's beautiful 'Chablis' esq texture and cooling granitic minerality. Rafa has a strong claim to be the finest exponent of modern Spanish white and you can definitely see why in recent vintages. There's just an effortless class about his wines.
From Rafael Palacios in Valdeorras the pack heads to the east, straight to the hallowed ground of Rioja. We've pulled a fresh, textural white from one of our favourite young wine makers, Sandra Bravo of Sierra de Tolono. This is a combination of multiple plots old vine Viura which has bee organically farmed across the northern edge of Rioja where cool climates and limestone bedrock give wines of great tension and personality.
From there we jump to Cataluna to pick up one of our favourite Sparklings; Suriol Brut Nature. It's here on biodynamically farmed, chalky soils that this old family estate produces some of the best fizz we've found. Over a year on lees for complexity resulting in a dry, complex toast and nut characters, yet vibrant acidity that works perfectly as an aperitif or alongside a little smokey, salty anchovy.
Next in line is Lectores Vini 'Pomagrana' Trepat - a wild thing designed for summer drinking. 'Trepat' is a native Catalan varietal, naturally low alcohol and high acidity which make it a prime candidiate for Rose production. But it's also a varietal that has lush coloured skins which is why Marc and Fredi of Lectores Vini push the 'Rose' definition a little harder than most, creating a incredibly dry, crisp wine that screams summer drinking but with a deep, vivid colour that helps to capture a real intensity of flavour. Over the last couple of vintages Pomagrana has become a bit of a cult summer hit - vivid colours, wild labels, super dry and just plain fun! Straight out of the wine bars culture of Barcelona.
Our final stop on the Christmas pack takes us back to Castille y Leon, Tempranillo country. Specificly Toro where our young friend Alvar de Dios is crafting some ultra fine bottles from an area usually associated with chunky-fruit bombs! Tio Uco is 90% Tempranillo lightened with a splash of Garnacha/Grenache. It's the perfect summer Temp - rich enough and powerful enough to handle anything coming off a barbecue with charmarks yet picked early and handled delicately so there's freshness and smooth tannin. In other words it tastes just as good before lunch is served as it does while lunch is being eaten!!