Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Capitulo 8 Garnacha Tintorera

The Winery
Bodegas Tintoralba is a wine cooperative owned by approximately 160 members in the town of Higueruela at 3,000 feet above sea level.  Thanks to the leadership of their winemaker Pedro Sarrión Martínez, Tintoralba produces wines that reflect not only the character of the terroir, but of their emblematic indigenous grape, Garnacha Tintorera.  The winery is in the DO Almansa within the La Mancha region of Spain.  The town lies about 100 kilometers from the Mediterranean Sea.  Capitulo is Spanish for Chapter so the name Capituo 8 is Chapter 8 which refers to book Don Quixote (full title is:  El ingenioso hidalgo don Quijote do la Mancha or The Ingenious Gentleman Don Quixote of La Mancha by Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra).  It plays off the region of Don Quixote with the name of the wine, a windmill visible on the label as well as an expressive quote or two.  I particularly like this one:

The Region
The vineyards, lying at 900 – 1,100 meters in elevation, offers shallow limestone soils that have a sandy texture and very little organic matter.  The continental climate is harsh and dry with extremes of frigid cold winters and summers that range from very hot during the day to cool at night.  These conditions; however, favor a longer ripening process, giving the grape more color, tannin and aroma helping the berry to demonstrate its true genetic properties.

The Grape 
The grape is Garnacha Tintorera, a predominant varietal in the region as well as a specific type of Garnacha.  The name of the grape comes from the red flesh of the grape itself.  The red flesh and thick skin allows it to offer a darker color than other black grapes.  The poor soil conditions force the Garnacha Tintorera to produce wine that have intense color but are lively, fruity and fresh on the palate.

The Wine 
The Capitulo 8 Garnacha shows impenetrable thick purple color with a nearly dark blue luster.  The aromas of dark cherry, black currant and balsamic draw your attention to the sense of a full bodied wine.  The wine is not as big as the color and the nose however.  It is fruit forward and jammy presenting black currant and plum with a sense of terroir that gives it place.  It is very approachable and easy drinking and at 13.5% abv it won’t sit you on your butt after a glass or two.

The Pairings
The wine will go well with burgers, roasts, pizza, cheeses, Mediterranean dishes with tomatoes, paprika and herbs such as thyme, oregano, rosemary and pepper.  But it will go very nicely with milk chocolate or chocolate with hints of cayenne to spice it up a little.  So it is very much an everyday wine that can easily be pulled into a treat of chocolate as well.

Visit Veraison Wine Brokers to see more Capitulo 8 wines.

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