Monday, July 31, 2006

Casal Caeiro - Barrica "del Mundo"

Our Vendimia Seleccionada Barrica 2003 has just been picked as the best Albariño in "El Mundo" (not the whole world - just the Spanish newspaper!)

In a recent tasting of 35 different Albariños from around our region, our Barrica emerged as the very top wine. Indeed, the panel actually went on to comment that they had tasted this very wine exactly 12 months ago, and they agreed that it had improved since their last tasting.

Many people believe that Albariño has to be drunk young, and does not improve with age - my view is a little different......

For me, an unoaked Albariño can still be quite "angular" immediately after the harvest (which is why we do not rush to bottle our wine). Depending on the vintage it can take up to 12 months to lose this edge, which is why I think our Albariño starts to peak in September - a year after the harvest.

Obviously, the small amount of Barrica that we make (just over 4,000 bottles) is quite different, and can continue to improve three or four years after the vintage.

Saturday, July 22, 2006

Castro Martin "on air" in Canada

Vancouver, Canada
The clear fm wine bar with Mark Davidson
(Vancouver’s leading wine educator)

July 24th 2006 – SEDUCTIVE WHITES
"Step outside your comfort zone this week with a wine that’s a little off the beaten path.

Wine store shelves are full of Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc, and rightly so, but don’t you just want to get wild once in a while, and be seduced by something new?

The first wine this week is sleek, racy, and thrilling to drink – Albariño is the grape variety responsible, and I’ve been having a (not so secret) affair with it for years. The Castro Martin Albariño is from Northwest Spain, and it’s so zippy, delicious and easy to drink that it should be banned! Crisp acidity, vibrant peachy fruit, and every time I drink it, it whispers, “Mark, what are you doing? Where are the Fresh Oysters?”………"

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

The original Mad Fish wine?

Happy, mad or just plain angry?
Galicia is an area steeped in tradition, and still enjoys a Fiesta of one sort or another nearly every day of the year (peaking in summer and nearly always heralded by loud fireworks thoughout the day and night!)
Of the numerous local fish and seafood festivals the seaside resort of Portonovo celebrates the skate festival - and it goes without saying that this is nearly always supported by the local wine - Albariño.
During a recent summer clearout of our archives I stumbled across this jolly label, with a rather sinister looking characature of a fish. Could this be the origin of the Mad Fish label?

Friday, July 14, 2006

The truth behind the rumours.....

It's all about wine!

After days of deliberation, and the opinions of every conceivable language and lip reading expert (including M. Chirac himself), the truth behind the Zidane assault has finally come to light.

Apparently the Italian defender Materazzi told Zidane that, following a recent comparative tasting, he considered Italian wines to be superior to their French counterparts.

No wonder Zidane was so offended!

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

It's official - Albariño is hot!....

Albariño is "flying" in London

According to "Wine Trends" (what's hot and what's not) in last week's Daily Telegraph, Albariño is fast becoming one of the UK's most popular white wines - and don't forget that many wine aficionados think that London is very much a trend setter when it comes to world wine consumption. To quote the article.....

"The current hot spell seems to have helped the fortunes of Albariño too. I've always enjoyed this Spanish white, but have never seen it on so many lists. It seems to be everywhere at the moment: is it going to be the new Sauvignon Blanc?"

"We have seen a definite move towards lighter alcohol and more aromatic whites this year...... Albariño is flying out."

What can I say, except perhaps, long may it continue!

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

They came from outer space!

David wears the latest Zidane head protector!

Ask any decent vigneron, in any country around our great world of wine, and every single one will tell you that quality begins in the vineyard. They will also probably tell you that they don't spray, or at the very least, they only spray when absolutely necessary. Well, I'm afraid to admit that the same applies here in Galicia, where the warmth and humidity of our 'Atlantic Maritime' climate obliges to intervene on occasions.

It goes without saying that when we do have to take action, we always ensure that we use the most ecologically friendly methods possible (including pheromone traps to confuse and disperse harmful insects). Having said all that, no right-minded grower is going to allow his crop to rot before his very eyes, which is why we reluctantly have no alternative but to spray.
Jokes aside for a moment, the above photograph shows our vineyard manager David, spraying in his protective gear. Do spare a thought for him - the air temperature on this day was 30°C (86°F) ........ hence David does not have a weight problem!