At the ICC the WING group tried six wines on the theme of Torres / Penedes / Catalonia. Here are my notes:

MARQUES DE MONISTROL BRUT ROSÉ 2009  –  11½% (Waitrose £11)
Typical “gluey” cava nose, with red fruit – under-ripe strawberry? Quite a long acid line, some prickle at first but the mousse quickly disappears, still retains interest and has a warm tannic tinge at the end.  A nice rosé twist on Cava.             Quality:  14/20     Value:  15/20

CÉRVOLES BLANC 2011 (Cérvoles Celler)  –  14½%  (Berry Bros. & Rudd £19)
Oaky first note: vanilla, citrus and toasty yeast nose. Lemon peel palate with big oak and a warm nutty note later. The Chardonnay / new oak tends to suggest a big Aus. Chardonnay , but this is cleaner, better balanced and less blowsy but even so maybe a bit too big to support the undeniable range of developing flavours. Probably better with a couple of years and a strong (smoked fish?) dish.          Quality:  14/20     Value:  13/20

CORONAS 2008 (Torres)  –  13½%  (The DrinkShop.com £9)
Bright purple/red , blackberry nose at first then more plummy. Blackberry fruit too but then a sweeter plum palate. Supple, enjoyable with some backbone but a little simple. For the price though – a good drinkable Tempranillo-based wine.  Quality:  15/20     Value:  18/20

GRAN CORONAS RESERVA 2008 (Torres)  –  14%  (Tanners £13)
Darker colour and a heavier nose – plums, mocha and hints of mushroom and later blackcurrants and other non-fruit elements. Longer and drying – needs food and/or time – but some complexity and Cabernet flavours. Similar structure to the previous wine but darker flavours and more complexity but a little harder.  Quality:  16/20     Value:  16/20

SALMOS 2010 (Torres)  –  14½%  (Waitrose £18.50)
Very dark. Nutty oak hints but plums and redcurrants too. A sharp hint and later a spicy (Cinnamon, Clove??) note too. Rich palate – plummy fruit and spicy leathery hints and a warm mineral lift at the end. Still evolving and pretty good.     Quality:  17/20     Value:  16/20.

FLORALIS MOSCATEL ORO (Torres)  –  15%  (Majestic £10 for ½l)
Mmmmm. Lovely nose of orange, lemon, grapes (!?), rose water and honey. The palate is simpler– butterscotch and caramel and a warmth from the alcohol. A little simpler and lighter than a similar Muscat Vin Doux. A little is enough but the wine would welcome a crème caramel or brûlée.     Quality:  16/20     Value:  16/20.

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