Wine in restaurants 1.3: Coma Vella and Cérvoles negre at Cal Joan del Batlle

This last weekend, a long one in Catalonia because Monday was a holiday, my wife and myself escaped the city and climbed up the Pyrenees (in our car) to Cal Joan del Batlle, a small but well appointed hotel at 1’250 meter height close to Sant Llorenç de Morunys. Contrary to most surrounding restaurants, that serve straightforward, nourishing mountain food, Cal Joan del Batlle’s menu is made up of rather elaborate recipes cooked very competently.

Cal Joan del Batlle courtyard

Going more in detail about their wine service, the wine list attracted me immediately. It is not very long; adequate in my view for a remote place with less than a dozen tables. But with a nice balance of Catalan / foreign wines and mainly filled with carefully selected bottles from smaller cellars, it gives a compelling backdrop to the restaurant’s cooking with enticing proposals to the wine lover.

There is a good selection of dessert wines by the glass; the wine temperature was adequate; and a wine pairing was offered with the tasting menu.

On the minus side, glasses are certainly substandard. They know and are considering how to address the issue.

A mark-up of around 50% over shop prices is in line or lower than many comparable restaurants and rounds off, in my opinion, a very attractive offer.

We had dinner on Saturday and Sunday, and both bottles were worth mentioning.

Coma Vella 2006 is a red from Mas d’en Gil, based in Bellmunt, DOQ Priorat. This winery has over forty plots with different grapes; its wines show this complexity. They also produce excellent virgin olive oil and vinegar.

It is a coupage of 40 % garnatxa, 25 % Cabernet Sauvignon, 20 % Carinyena, 10 % Syrah and 5 % Merlot., Harvested by hand, with a first selection in the vineyard, grapes are collected in 20 kg boxes and taken to the winery, where they undergo a second selection. The wine is aged for twelve to fourteen months in French and American oak and clarified with egg white before bottling.

Dark cherry red, with a lot of fruit both red and black, balsamic, the minerality common in Priorat and some spicy overtones. In the mouth shows big structure, noticeable acidity, with fine tannins and long finish.

It paired perfectly with my veal entrecote with goat cheese fondue.

Cérvoles negre 2006 is a DO Costers del Segre red from Cérvoles Celler. Handpicked and manually selected grapes from Ull de Llebre 38 %, Cabernet Sauvignon 32%, Garnatxa 18 % and Merlot 12 %. Vine planted ca. 25 years ago in loamy soils at around 700 m over sea level.

Aged for twelve months in fine grain, slow growth French oak. Not-too-deep cherry red, with fruity nose and medium structure in mouth. Fine, fresh, elegant. A great match for my cêpe-stuffed pigs’ trotters.

I would like to end this entry, one year and forty-five posts since I started this blogging adventure, thanking my readers for their patience and menacing with more posts to come. Salut! Cheers!


1 comment:

  1. Doncs és de valorar la seva oferta de vins... Un lloc amb ganes d'anar... Salut!.