Spain – old and new.


An independent wine merchant recently commented to me on the move away from the traditional, more oaky, style of Spanish white wines to fresher,  lemony wines. In our conversation we both expressed a preference for the previous style and agreed on the tendency of the newer style to appear bland and characterless. Broad statements, I know, but I wonder how many of our mass of followers feel the same. Anyway, it’s always comforting to have one’s prejudices confirmed.

All that was by way of introducing the Tomas Cusine Macabeu Finca Racon 2010 from the Wine Society. At £14.95 it wasn’t cheap but worth every penny. As recommended, we decanted it 90 mins before tasting – how often does white wine repay you for doing that. It was crystal clear in the glass, with viscosity very evident (14.5% ABV). The colours were lemony yellow with a slight green tinge. On the nose it had acidity which gave it an appealing freshness but the overarching impression was one of depth and power. The mouth feel was silky and soft, the flavours of almonds and marzipan very full. It ended dry with slight salty notes. It was a great food wine – we had it with smoked mackerel, steamed potatoes in a mustard vinaigrette and rocket – not flavours for the more faint hearted. This wine stood up to them.

The wine comes from a very small D.O. region in north-east Catalonian Spain called Costers del Segre, close to the more well known Priorat D.O. This particular producer’s Macabeo comes highly recommended, probably because the production is only 4000 bottles. I have one bottle left and have asked the WS if they intend re-stocking it. A super Spanish white in the traditional style.


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