Wednesday, July 29, 2009

2006 Celler Can Blau Can Blau Monsant, Spain

This was 15$ at K&L; I think at this point, it's long gone. It's been in my cellar for well over a year. Imported by Jorge Ordonez, which can be a mixed bag...I've had some stuff great, some stuff not so great. At the very least, Jorge Ordonez is a controversial guy.

Montsant is in Western Spain and is a part of Catalonia. Montsant was a sub-appellation of Tarragona called Falset until 2001. 40% Carinena, 40% Syrah, and 20% Garnacha. 14.5% alcohol. There's a lot going on in this wine, and it keeps changing and making itself more interesting. Initially when opened, it was a little tart, with raspberry, cocoa, and some oak. Day two, this wine had developed more cherry/blackberry and other toasty elements. It came off as a little hot to me as well. Once it's in the mouth, it's big and plush, but well-balanced. By day two, it turns velvety. Lots of sweet raspberry, blackberry and earthy/smoky flavors, with a long graphite finish. I like this wine and find it fascinating to drink. I'm kind of disappointed that I don't have a couple more bottles, because it's a great value at 15$. It really over delivers at the price. A-/A

This wine got me thinking a lot too, because a lot of the time, this isn't really the type of wine that I would be into. It's got a fair amount of oak, and I would consider it to be fairly new world, but I think that the key is that it wasn't overdone. Too often it just seems to me that a lot of reds are big for the sake of being big (and appealing to Parker), and all of the ripeness is further magnified with all that toasty oak. So I was expecting not to like this wine at all based on my pre-conceived notions of what constitutes good, but ended up really liking it. This came down on the right side of the spectrum for me. It also demonstrates something that I think makes wine infinitely fascinating: there are an infinite number of variations of wine, and no two experiences are alike. They're unique. Taking this concept a little further, it's a huge topic and just when you start to get comfortable with some subjects (if you're not content to drink California Cabs for the rest of your life), you realize that there are an infinite number of things to learn, and you can never know it all...


CabFrancoPhile said...

For me, the price makes a big difference in how much I enjoy the ripe oak wines. For $10 or $15, I'll tolerate some imbalance, and I'd rather it be too much of something than too little flavor (thin, extreme herbaceousness). It's just that very rarely is there much to be gained moving up to higher price points with this style.

Jeff said...

Good point. If this were 50$, I wouldn't have been that into it. The Nero d'Avola that I had earlier this week was about twice as much, and I really was not a fan, even though I'm sure there are a lot of people that would like the wine a lot. I have a tendency to strongly dislike vanilla in wine, and it was a major part of the wine. For some reason that flavor doesn't seem to fit for me. I do like the more "savory" types of flavors that come from oak though when they're done right.