Finca Collado Re-Visited, a Tasting of the New Releases….and Lunch!


 
Finca Collado from the Vineyards.

   Finca Collado is somewhat a favourite bodega amongst ex-pat groups living in the nearby Ontinyent area and has enjoyed a similar status with wine groups from the Camp de Turia nearer to Valencia for just about a year.

The bodega is a small family affair with an open door policy whose vineyards were planted some 25 years ago. The 13 hectares contain Macabeo, Chardonnay and Moscatel for white wine and Tempranillo, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Monastrell for reds.

Since I discovered the property some 18 months ago I have visited four times, twice with groups wanting a tour, once to experience the harvest and again this week to taste the four recently released wines.

I was immediately impressed by the two wines the vineyard has produced since 2004, and a 2003 red I have tasted regularly as well! These two wines are a white, 50% each of Chardonnay and Moscatel and a red 50% each of Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot.

Healthy grapes in the vineyard last summer.

 

On previous visits I have been lucky enough to taste wines from the casks of vintages as yet un-released, including varietals such as the merlot. In 2009 this was considered good enough to vinify 3000 litres separately with a view to a monovarietal release. 2010 also saw a harvest sufficiently good to vinify some merlot with a view to making a rosado for the first time!

I was keen to taste the product of this work as well as the new 2010 white and the 2008 red.

The bodega produces small amounts of wines and have sold out of all the previous vintages so at least with these four new wines there is now an income stream on hand again!

The first wine we tasted was the white, from a production of just 6000 bottles. This wine has always relied on the chardonnay for structure and depth whilst the moscatel adds aromatics and freshness to the blend. As with chardonnay across the region last years conditions gave a wine with a little more acidity and this is reflected in the wine. Pale yellow, clean and bright with gold flashes the wine is brilliant. At 12% ABV the wine has a degree less alcohol than last years vintage.

Recently pressed must from the Chardonnay harvest.

    On the nose it is drier than previous vintages, more green apple and less floral though we must remember that it was only bottled in January and will take a little while still to evolve in the bottle.

In the mouth the green apple of the chardonnay predominates but it remains a lovely white for easy drinking. This is already safely cellared for summer drinking! ( 5€ at the bodega)

The 2010 vintage produced a bigger crop of Merlot which allowed a little experimentation. Merlot with its good fruit and high colour, especially in the mediterranean, is ideal for producing rosado wines. Daniel Belda have produced their Rosat for a while nearby in Fontanars.

The Finca Collado 2010 Rosado does not deflate expectations! At 12% ABV there are just 3000 bottles of this wine……do not expect it to be available long! A nice deep strawberry rose colour, clean and bright. On the nose roses, floral, then quite full strawberry, lively and fresh. In the mouth just what you are looking for in a summer drinker! Full, good strawberry fruit, balanced lively and with a nice long finish. Excellent for drinking on its own or with seafood. ( 3€ at the bodega)

Also released is the Merlot 2009 Tinto which has been maturing nicely in a  conical wooden cask in the bodega. Also 14% ABV there are just 3700 bottles available.This wine is Deep plum red in colour with long legs. On the nose red and black fruit, but it remains a little closed and I think will need another year in bottle before it offers its full potential. In the mouth it is full, jammy with smooth tannins. Nicely balanced with well-integrated alcohol this has a lot more to offer. Buy it now…..it will not be available for long either!  It also has a projected life of 5-10 years. ( 8€ at the bodega.)

Mari-Carmen and Guillermo whose home Finca Collado is.

  The 2008 Tinto is 70% Cabernet Sauvignon and 30%  Merlot in this release. It is also 14% ABV, and garnet, deep in colour and with long slow legs. It too is quite closed on the nose red and black fruits of the forest, blackcurrants and a nice touch of wood from the crianza. In the mouth full, tannic and absolutely wonderful! This is a vintage to buy and lay down and with all previous vintages sold out this is a sensible idea!

A visit to Finca Collado these days is never complete without a wonderful lunch from Mari-Carmen and this visit was no exception with paté, cheese nuts and dates and a family favourite prawn cocktail with her grandmothers salsa rosa recipe!

Main course was cordero al ajillo with its sauce thickened with a picada of bread and almonds, also a family tradition! Guillermo managed to find a bottle of the 2005  Tinto, probably the best red the Finca has produced and a `Holy Grail´given that it was sold out a year ago! For the record it was 14.8%ABV, garnet with long legs, a really deep wine! On the nose wonderful woodfruits predominate with a hint of oak. In the mouth jammy with plums, damsons, cherries and blackcurrants. This has a long satisfying finish and a lot of life left in it yet! For those lucky enough to have some in stock it has a long life ahead and shows just what the bodega is capable of! Wonderful!

For pudding it is worth recording Mari-Carmen had prepared the classic pear poached in red wine with sugar and cinnamon stick. This had been poached in Finca Collado 2003 and had produced the richest sauce I had ever tasted!

Pear poached in Finca Collado Tinto 2003!

 

Visitors are assured of a very friendly welcome and a great visitor experience.

Don´t put off your visit too long or you may be disappointed if there is nothing left to buy!

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