Monsters of Montsant

When most people think of Spanish wine, the think of Rioja, now I love Rioja, but there are so many great (And inexpensive) wines all over Spain.

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For those of you who don’t know, Montsant (Pronounced Munsan) is a Spanish DO or Denominacio d’ Origen in Catalunia, right next to Priorat.  

 

Here is a brief summary of Spanish wine.

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Spain has over 60 different DO’s and 7 distinct climates.

The Ebro River Valley is best know for Rioja and some Verdejo (A great Oaked white wine similar to Sauvignon Blanc with the depth and mouth feel of a Chardonnay).  Rioja is made from the grape Tempranillo, which is the most popular grape of this area.

The Duero River Valley also has plenty of Verdejo, and their most popular red is Tinta de Toro, which is their variation of the Temranillo grape.

Northwestern Spain is know for one of my favorite wines, Albariño.  Albariño comes from the coast line of Rias Baixas (Pronounced Rye-us Bye-shus) and goes perfectly with simply prepaired seafood.

The Central Plateau, home to Madrid, is is hot and dry and makes some great value reds made from the grape Monastrell.

Another hot and dry area is Andalucia which is best known for its production of Sherry.

The Spanish Islands, including the Canary Islands make a wide range of wines, but I haven’t personally tried any wines from this area, nor have I heard of anby that were impressive.  Though in all fairness, I haven’t really heard a much at all about wine in this area of Spain.

Today, I’m going to focus on the Mediterranean Coast, more specifically Catalunia, more specifically Montsant.

Cava also comes out of this area, and I love anything with bubbles.

Montsant almost completly surrounds the much more famous Priorat.  For me, Priorat can be comparable to Italy’s Super Tuscan.  The climates are similar and many different grape varietals are grown, including Cabernet Savignon, Merlot, Syrah, and a few local grape varietals.  Priorat is a DOQ, or Denominacio d’ Origen Qualificada.

Montsant is like the distant cousin, making similar wines, and even though its wines are not as well know, there are a handful of super awesome and inexpensive wines, like a baby Super Tuscan.  I really enjoy Monsant, it gives a big and bold old World style wine that defiantly packs a bang for a buck.  I am going to start to pop these bad boys, a review to follow…

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