Vintaix Magnum Rave

Do not be confused; I do my best not to praise extravagantly any wines, and I hope I am not starting to lose my head. It is rather a wine tasting I attended recently, which its organizers, Vintaix, call Rave. It was not a wild party, as the name may suggest, but certainly informal, with live jazz and fluid protocol, and ably led by Miguel Figini.

The first wine of the night was a DO Cava: Castellroig Brut Nature Gran Reserva 2005. This Cava was explained by its winemaker, Marcel Sabaté, who stressed his obsession with terroir and its combination with a given grape variety.

The wine, as a Gran Reserva should, showed developed secondary aromas of bread and croissant, together with a very fine, well integrated and persistent bubble. It comes from a coupage of old-vine Xarel.lo and Macabeu, with no less of 36 months aging. This is not the ideal Cava for a refreshing single glass, but rather a great wine to pair with a full meal.

The second wine was a Petrea blanc 2003 barrel fermented white from the Mas Comtal winery, DO Penedès. It has mainly Chardonnay with a dash of Xarel.lo, with 10 months of Hungarian oak. The colour was a developed lemon yellow, not surprising since it was from the 2003 vintage. In the nose it was understandably closed at the beginning, but with time it developed aromas of butter, white fruits and a hint of wood, with some mineral notes at the end. In the mouth it confirmed the aromas detected; it was unctuous, still fresh and with a long finish. It showed the master hand of one of the leading Penedès winemakers, the late and lamented Joan Milà, who died prematurely last year.

The first red came from DO Empordà and the Espelt winery. Terres Negres 2007 is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Carinyena, aged twelve months in French oak. Deep cherry colour, with the oak evident in the nose, along with ripe fruit. In the mouth it is well structured, somewhat oaky, with enough tannins and acidity to keep for several years, when it will probably show greater balance.

Signes 2008 is a DO Catalunya red from Bodegas Puiggrós, in the town of Òdena. It is composed of Sumoll and Garnatxa coming from 60+ years vines. Sumoll is a local grape variety that all but disappeared and is now being revived by a handful of wineries, using modern winemaking techniques hitherto never available to Sumoll wines. The old vines, still grown as bushes, are harvested manually and the grapes are collected in small boxes. Aged in French oak for ten months. Deep red, with aromas of toast and spices, with kaleidoscopic evolution in the glass after a few minutes of swirling. In the mouth also show up citric fruits and licorice; excellent balance. Explaines by its enthusiastic winemaker, Josep Puiggrós, it shows how Sumoll wines can be in the future.

Moving now to DO Montsant, we sampled Dosterras 2007 from Celler Dosterras. It comes 100% from 100+ years old Garnatxa vines, harvested manually in 10 kg boxes and aged for sixteen months in French oak. Intense red, with fine legs, there is black fruit and minerality and flower aromas; with a very smooth mouth, freshness and an excellent balance with the wood notes.

The last red was one of the DOQ Priorat pioneers, Clos Martinet 2004 from Mas Martinet. As Magí Batllevell explained, it has 40 % Garnatxa, and 20 % each of Carinyena, Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah, aged in French oak for sixteen months. Very deep red with few signs of evolution. As for aromas: very mineral, balsamic, black fruits, coffee and toast notes. It fills the mouth, with still noticeable acidity, noble tannins, velvety, long lasting.

After the tasting I had the opportunity to discuss with Silvia Naranjo some of the comments I made on the Guide of Catalan Wine in a previous post. An appropriate end to the Rave, an experience I hope to repeat soon.



  1. He assistit a una de les "raves" del Miguel (i penso tornar-hi, a properes), i és una bona manera alternativa de fer un tast lúdic i informal. Salut!

  2. Jo no havia pogut fins ara, i em va agradar força. Segur que no serà la darrera.

  3. Ja ha plogut, però, feina ben feta... així que respecte a la fotografia de Clos Martinet la font es aquesta
    De res. (No costa res, com a mínim, citar les fonts)