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Ratings by RobertParker.com
The Independent Consumer's Guide to Fine Wines

 Wine Enthusiast Stars of Southern Spain Anciano 5yr 2005
Among Spanish wine regions, it is the northern names—Rioja, Ribera del Duero, Toro, Bierzo and Rías Baixas, among others— that regularly draw the flashy headlines. However, if big red wines, fortified wines in myriad styles and traditionally crafted sweet wines get your mouth watering, then it's the south of Spain that merits attention. From the dry plains of La Mancha east to the sea-kissed Levante and down through historic Andalucía, southern Spain is home to most of the country's top wines made from lusty varieties like Syrah, Monastrell (Mourvèdre), Garnacha (Grenache), Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. It's also where one finds Spain's best fortified and dessert wines: dry Sherries from Jerez, luscious Pedro Ximénez-based wines from Montilla- Moriles and sweet Moscatels from Málaga. It used to be easy to dismiss southern Spain as a sprawling, sun-baked land responsible for mostly subpar wines with high alcohol, odd or raisiny flavors and poor balance. Although southern Spain's hot, dry climate still produces many chunky, baked, sometimes wacky-tasting wines, it also yields jewels that boast size, powerful flavors, finely roasted earthy nuances and exquisite balance. "I don't accept that the south is overly challenged," says Xandra Falcó, general manager of her family's Dominio de Valdepusa, which makes wine under the Marqués de Griñón label from vineyards near Toledo in La Mancha. "Every region in the world has its good wines and its bad ones," she says. "If you care for your vines, control your macerations and have a winemaker that understands the grape varieties and the terroir, you can make fine wine. It's always more a matter of who is behind the wines than where they come from." To simplify southern Spain, think of it as being divided into three regions. The biggest and most amorphous subsection is southcentral Spain, which includes La Mancha, Valdepeñas and smaller Denominaciónes... More Details

 Vega Barcelona Cava
Rating: 88 points
“Dusty, creamy, powdered sugar aromas are nice and easygoing, while the palate has balance and a mouthfeel that caresses solid apple, citrus and peach flavors. Crisp on the finish, with a decent amount of elegance for a $15 wine. Hard to go wrong with this bubbly”.

Article: "WINES OF THE TIMES; Graduating To a Better Cava" - The New York Times

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