Gramona Gessami Blanco Penedes 2011
40% Sauvignon Blanc; 35% Muscat d'Frontignan; 15% Muscat d'Alexandria; 10% Gewürztraminer
Gramona is located in the Penedes region of Spain just 45 minutes from Barcelona along Spain's Mediterranean coast. The Climate in the Penedes is mild and warm, benefiting mostly from a Mediterranean influence. However, as the differences in elevation are quite dramatic (with some vines at over 700 meters), there are many microclimates in the zone. Soil in the region is not particularly rich in organic material (as is often the case in great winemaking regions) with high levels of sand and clay.
Gramona is, unfortunately, one of the last remaining family-owned cava houses of the Penedes. Here, elderly ladies from the village carefully wrap each bottle before being packed for transport and the entire operation is carried out by people who love the family and the estate. For the property, their reference points are in Champagne in France, and they regularly taste wines from this area next to their own (with often astonishing results). However, pricing remains very low compared to even the most mundane, negociant Champagnes on the market. These are some of the best values in our portfolio.
Known for bold reds, crisp whites and distinctive sparkling and fortified wines, Spain has embraced international varieties and wine styles while continuing to place primary emphasis on its own native grapes. Though the country’s climate is diverse, it is generally hot and dry. In the center of the country lies a vast, arid plateau known as the Meseta Central, characterized by extremely hot summers and frequent drought.
Ribera del Duero is gaining ground with its single varietal Tempranillo wines, recognized for their concentration of fruit and opulence. Priorat, a sub-region of Catalonia, specializes in bold, full-bodied red blends of Garnacha (Grenache), Cariñena (Carignan), and often Syrah and Cabernet Sauvignon. Catalonia is also home to Cava, a sparkling wine made in the traditional method but from indigenous varieties. In the cool, damp northwest region of Galicia, refreshing white Albariño and Verdejo dominate.
With hundreds of white grape varieties to choose from, winemakers have the freedom to create a virtually endless assortment of blended wines. In many European regions, strict laws are in place determining the set of varieties that may be used, but in the New World, experimentation is permitted and encouraged. Blending can be utilized to enhance balance or create complexity, lending different layers of flavors and aromas. For example, a variety that creates a soft and full-bodied wine would do well combined with one that is more fragrant and naturally high in acidity. Sometimes small amounts of a particular variety are added to boost color or aromatics. Blending can take place before or after fermentation, with the latter, more popular option giving more control to the winemaker over the final qualities of the wine.