Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Parés Baltà Calcari 2010

                                                                           DOMBEK photo © 2012
Parés Baltà
Calcari 2010
Penedès, Spain

100% Xarel.lo 

Light lemon yellow in color, this wine has a schisty minerality on the nose; so much so that one truly senses terroir here, along with Mediterranean influences due to its close proximity to the Sea. I for one would love to be sitting on a hillside terrace next to the Mediterranean while sipping this, with oysters on the half shell - Heaven! Herbaceous & sexy with white pepper and a touch of limeade citrus on the palate, this is beautifully clean with a crisp, dry finish. Simple, straightforward and elegant, yet with enough complexity to please, and balance to spare, this is delicious and perfect for a hot summer day. Don’t let the austere label scare you!

Xarel.lo is the major grape for Cava, Spain’s sparkling white wine made in the methode Champenoise (Champagne method).  It contributes great body and wonderful acidity.  Parés Baltà is a family-owned winery in the Penedès region located in Catalonia in the northeast on the coast of the Mediterranean.  Winemaking in the Penedès has deep roots.  Amphorae and Egyptian wine jars uncovered at archaeological sites suggest that wine was introduced here by the Phoenicians some seven centuries BC. 

The Parés Baltà winery dates back to 1790.  They have vineyards on five estates, situated around the winery and in the mountains of Penedès.  Cultivating in an ecological way since their inception, they have been certified ecological/organic since 2004.  The cork is in fact stamped “organic”.  They tend their own flock of sheep to fertilize soils and have beehives to encourage pollination.  Actual winemaking is in the hands of two women, Maria Elena Jimenez and Marta Casas, oenologists and wives of grandsons Joan and Josep of original winemaker Joan Cusine Hill.   For more detailed information on their winery, wines, history, etc.:

I adore Spanish whites in summer and hope to bring you more in the near future!

This wine is brought to us by Easterly Wines, Belfast, ME. and imported by Broadbent Selections, Inc., San Francisco, CA.  You can find it in Portland at the Browne Trading Co. ($17/btl) and  Downeast Beverage, Commercial St.  Bresca on Middle St. also carries it and last I knew so does the Cantina on York St.  

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