Porrera, Capçanes and the Fira del Vi de Falset. Vilamarxant´s Wine Club goes on Tour! Part 2 Celler de Capçanes and the Nit de les Garnatxes.

It seems strange to go wine-tasting at midnight but straight from the tasting in Porrera we made our way to the nearby village of Capçanes to the Cooperative where it seemed the whole village had gathered!

Celler de Capçanes.

Founded in 1933 by five families, the Bodega came to  notice in 1995 when they produced a kosher wine for the Jewish community in Barcelona. Called Flor de Primavera this wine counts today as one of the best in Spain. When we arrived the party was in full swing! Actually this was the fifth Nit de les Garnatxes and the bodega had arranged various areas where different wines could be sampled.

First of these was in the open air where the three house wines were available. This range, Mas Donis is the entry-level for the bodega and very good they are too! A new white Macabeo was full but fresh with a very long finish and lots of body. The Rosat, 80% Grenache with 10% each of Merlot and Syrah is also full-bodied with zippy strawberry and raspberry fruit with a glycerine sweetness and long satisfying finish. This is made without pressing the grapes and the depth is incredible! The red is 80% Grenache with 20% Syrah and both were fermented in stainless steel, with the finished Syrah spending a short time in French oak later before blending. Ruby red with violet highlights with a bouquet of cherries and Xmas cake. Nice sweet tannins in the mouth with fruit and a medium finish.

At the table the caterers worked flat-out carving jamon to feed the hungry crowd…..a veritable masterclass! Mas Collet olive oils were also available to taste.

Carving Jamon!

Inside the main bodega a huge art gallery had been created and it was here the individual grenache wines were to be found. Four wines from 2010 from old vines and from completely different soils were presented under the name Cabrida. The first Cabrida Panal was described as easy to drink and understand. produced on soils from dry hill-sides, wind-blown, and with arid sands with chalk below. The second wine Cabrida  Licorella is named after the schist which predominates, fine minerally slate which gives the wine its principle attribute. Third was Cabrida Argila, from zones where lakes have left their sediments from which the red colour, which oxidises quickly, comes. Finally Cabrida Calissa, from stony soils where water makes rivulets and scours the surface, slow steady rain only permeating to the roots, the wines reflect the more compact terrain.

Also inside were the sweet reds produced by the bodega, Pansal del Calas 2008 and 1996, being served with chunks of rich almond cakes topped with chocolate….a veritable calorie free zone…..not! These are wines from 70% Grenache, the remainder being Carinyena. Traditional vinos de licor these wines are fermented and then stopped with the addition of alcohol which takes it to 16.5% ABV. The wines are then aged in French oak for fifteen months, the first six being in 2-5 year old oak, then racked and oaked again in new oak for nine months before being transferred to tank for a further three months before bottling. Concentrated wines with roasted damson scents, cherries, toasts, coffee, chocolate etc. Elegant , fresh and smooth in the mouth, this is a wine for chocolate!

Guest wines were also available down in the cellars of the bodega.  L´Origan, the San Sadurni d´Anoia company were showing three of their cava range, the white from Xarel-lo, Macabeo and Chardonnay, the Rosat from 85% Pinot Noir with Chardonnay and Aire de l´Origan a blend of Macabeo, Xarel-lo, Parellada and Chardonnay. Part of the blends have had some oak ageing giving the wines finesse and depth.

Cava from L´Origan.

Vila Viniteca, the Barcelona based wine shop were showing four wines, El Perro Verde a 2010  Rueda from the Verdejo grape variety, fresh and fruity, El Jardin de Lucia, 2009, and Albariño from the Rias Baixas in Galicia, also fresh but with good depth, a Schloss Golbelsberg Riesling Urgestein 2009 from Austria, lacking some of the acidity I would have expected, and finally Chateau-Fuisse, Bourgogne Blanc JJ Vincent 2009, a pure chardonnay from Burgundy, typically Burgundian with hints of wet wool on the nose and fresh acidity but again a little lighter than I like.

Finally from DO Penedès Pardas were showing their Xarel-lo 2008 full with red fruit flavours, depth and nice acidity. The Pardas Rupestris 2009 a blend of Xarel-lo, Malvasia Macabeo and Xarel-lo Vermell is more interesting with its herb flavours, rosemary and ginebra  nose, and passion fruit flavours in the mouth with a nice fresh acidity. 14% ABV and four months on the lees, it sells for around 7€ the bottle!

For the record, the following morning we were to visit the Falset Wine Fair where we met with Francesc Quintana Coll, head of sales at the Celler de Capçanes. He took us through the six wines produced by the bodega that had not been on offer the night before!

  • Capçanes Lasandal, 2008 Garnatxa Barrica 14%ABV with 10% Syrah. A wine which sells well in the US this was a nice cherry colour, with long legs and medium density. On the nose quite light, and it passes easily across the palate with nice fruit and a soft long finish.
  • Mas Collet 2008 a blend of Garnatxa, Cabernet Sauvignon, Tempranillo and Carinyena, the wine is a similar colour to the last and also quite light, in the mouth lighter still.
  • Costers del Gravet 2007  14.5% ABV and a blend of 20% Garnatxa, 70% Cabernet Sauvignon and 10% Carinyena has had 12 months in oak barrels. This was a nice ruby-red, medium density, and long-legged. On the nose sweet, hints of meat,( roast beef )  but really nice in the mouth, vanilla, toasty oak flavours, soft tannins and nicely ripe fruit. Good length, really liked this!
  • 2009 Peraj Haábib Flor de Primavera 14.5% ABV and the Kosher wine. A joven style wine from Carinyena, Garnatxa and Cabernet Sauvignon,  a nice deep cherry red with good long legs, nice cherry fruit on the nose jammy, and in the mouth lovely fruit balanced with tannin, it needs another year in the bottle to integrate properly.
  • Cabrida 2008,15% ABV and 100% Garnatxa from 100-year-old vines. Nice intense deep cherry , on the nose cherry and blueberry, jammy fruit and peppery. In the mouth fruit, oak, alcohol and tannins are perfectly integrated…..a very nice wine which sells for about 40€ a bottle.
  • And finally the sweet Vi de Licor, Pansal de Calas and 16% ABV. Intense deep cherry black, long slow legs with lots of glycerine. On the nose fresh red and black fruit, sweet and in the mouth fresh , sweet and concentrated! Sells at around 20€ a half-litre bottle.


The party was still in full swing when we left allowing ourselves a glass or two of the Macabeo before retiring to bed…..well we had been spitting all day!

Part 3 to come on the wines tasted at the Falset Wine Fair.


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