Saturday, January 12, 2013

2007 Salinas Monastrell

Tonight I've returned to Spain for a wine selection to go with my dinner, so I've landed on the 2007 Salinas Monastrell, from the Alicante region of Spain.  Now for those of you unfamiliar, Monastrell is more commonly known by its French name, Mourvedre, the third component of the ever popular "GSM" blend of Grenache, Syrah and Mourvedre.  It's somewhat unusual to find bottles of Mourvedre, but Spain has made it a much more popular option under the Monastrell moniker.

This wine is an inky purple toward the center of the glass, that bleeds to a lovely garnet around the edges.  The nose is a nice blend of tart cherry, leather and some earthy notes of forest floor, or as some of my friends would say, a bit of a barnyard smell.  The taste is very interesting, with some notes of tart cherry up front, quickly followed by a lovely combination of oak, truffle and dried herbs.  The finish is quite tannic, but it's also fairly long, making this a rather pleasant sipping wine.

Overall, I would rate this wine a solid 7, not only because I find it pleasant, but it was also a super value!  I bought this one on clearance at my local wine merchant, G.B. Russo's for only $3.50, so how could I complain?  Tonight I am pairing this with a rather interesting dinner of Swai fillet baked with butter, lemon and fresh dill, a baked potato and some steamed broccoli, and the somewhat tannic nature of this wine really amplifies the acidity of the lemon and aromatics of the dill.  You wouldn't think it would work, but it really does!

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