Category Archives: Red Wine

Summer Salads and Sherry Glasses

Spanish Table Seattle Newsletter                                                       August 19, 2011      

My favorite healthy and delicious lunch is mixed vegetables topped with Spanish bonito en aceite (olive oil) and a splash of sherry vinegar, such as Toro Albalá Reserva. With fresh greens from your own garden or farmer’s market, you can get even fancier by adding sliced hard-boiled egg, white asparagus spears from Spain and our own Lemon Stuffed Olives. Mi Conserva brand tuna ($9.99/7.4 oz) is our best value, and this tuna is rich enough to carry you through 3 or 4 light meals.

 The only thing that could improve this lunch would be enjoying it with a chilled glass of Tio Pepe Fino sherry. Especially now that we have authentic sherry glasses that we ordered directly from the bodega in Jerez!  

 

A dozen full grown padron plants are available, with peppers on them.   Plant now! $6.95 each, while they last.

We temporarily moved many of Spanish cheeses to our Paris Grocery shop two doors down the street from Spanish Table while our deli case was being repaired. Our grab and go selection at Spanish Table is still available, including Manchego. For Spanish and French cheeses cut to order, please go to Paris Grocery for the time being (1418 Western Avenue, 206-682-0679).   

NEW WINES 

2010 Bermejo Rosado, Lanzarote Canary Islands ($23.99) Anyone who has seen the cases of rosé stacked up at Spanish Table and Paris Grocery know that I love the pink stuff!   Today we received one of the most unusual rosados we’ve ever had the fortune to taste. Bermejo rosado is made from the Listan Negro grape grown on Lanzarote, in the Canary Islands. The black volcanic soils provide little nutrition to the vines and its desert climate provides minimal water. Oenologists discovered that by planting the vines in widely spaced craters, enough condensation would be created to keep the vines alive. The volcanic soils give Bermejo mineral and effervescent notes, rich red fruit, balance and a hint of herbs on the finish. This is a delicious rosé, and an experience! Only ten bottles available.

2007 Remelluri Blanco Rioja ($80.00) “The white wine is perennially a candidate for Rioja’s finest; the 2007 Blanco being a case in point. Made from a blend of 7 grapes (Viognier, Chardonnay, Roussanne, Marsanne, Sauvignon Blanc, Garnacha Blanca, and Moscatel del Pais) with all but the Moscatel and Garnacha Blanca components receiving barrel fermentation and 12 months in oak, it is a unique concoction well worth trying. Light gold colored with an alluring bouquet of pit fruits, tropical aromas, baking spices, honeysuckle and acacia, on the palate it is equally complex. The wine is dry, the flavors savory, and the acid structure makes the wine quite vibrant. This lengthy effort will pair well with the richest of fish courses.” 92 points Wine Advocate, 92 points Stephen Tanzer Very limited; only six bottles came to Washington State.    

1999 Remelluri La Granja Rioja Gran Reserva ($80.00) Bodegas Remelluri has a new importer and we’re now able to offer a limited amount of their special wines that were not previously available. The1999 Remelluri Gran Reserva just came in and it is absolutely superb! Vibrant fruit has notes of tobacco, chocolate, coffee and vanilla with silky tannins; it defines elegance and refinement. “The monumental 1999 Remelluri La Granja Gran Reserva is a testament to what can be achieved in Rioja. Made up of a blend of 86% Tempranillo, 12% Garnacha, and 2% Graciano, it was fermented with native yeasts and aged for 27 months in French and American oak. Beautifully expressive aromatically, it gives up exotic spices, lavender, incense, a hint of balsamic, black cherry, and blackberry. In the glass it deftly combines elegance and power while concealing enough structure to endure for at least another 10-15 years. At the asking price, it is a steal in world class wine. The modern winery of Remelluri was established in 1967. The vineyards are farmed organically and the winery employs an integrated system of agriculture. The winemaker is the renowned Telmo Rodriguez. Remelluri’s Blanco is the reference standard against which all others are measured in virtually every vintage.” 96 points Wine Advocate  

 

Bodegas R. Lopez Heredia “Library” Gran Reservas arrived today! Once per year, Lopez Heredia offers us the opportunity to order a limited number of Gran Reservas from their cellars. Here’s a snapshot of what just came in the door; these make fantastic gifts for yourself or someone special:

1985 Viña Tondonia Rioja Gran Reserva ($150.00) 95 points Stephen Tanzer

1981 Viña Tondonia Rioja Gran Reserva ($150.00) 90 points Stephen Tanzer  

1981 Viña Bosconia Rioja Gran Reserva ($150.00) 94 points Stephen Tanzer 

1976 Viña Tondonia Rioja Gran Reserva ($375.00) 92 points Wine Advocate

1970 Viña Tondonia Rioja Gran Reserva ($650.00) 93 points Wine Advocate

1970 Viña Bosconia Rioja Gran Reserva ($650.00) 93 points Wine Advocate

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Exclusive Wines From Spain

penafiel

Peñafiel Castle, Ribera del Duero

Spanish Table Seattle Newsletter                                                       August 10, 2011      

We were fortunate to take an extraordinary trip to Northern Spain this year with wine importer Olé Imports. baconWe met incredible winemakers, helped out with viticultural work in their vineyards, and best of all, tasted a spectacular array of wines.  We placed special orders for new wines and the first shipment finally arrived last  week, which coincided with a visit by our friends from Olé Imports, Patrick Mata (owner) and Ben Carson (General Manager). B. Don Sancho de Londoño barbequing bacon over vine clippings in his Calma Rioja vineyards. Both the wine and the bacon were incredible.

New Wines from Olé Imports Trip

2008 Bodegas D.S. Londoño Calma Rioja ($15.99) Winemaker David Sampedro grew up in Rioja Alavesa in a family connected to the land and viticulture. Early on, he realized that the Graciano grape is an essential element in a great Rioja, contributing color, spice and acidity. 2008 Calma is 90% Tempranillo and 10% Graciano, aged in barrel for 12 months. Aromas of spice, cigar box and vanilla display a purity of red fruit and dusty earth; well integrated oak provides  structure, elegance and balance. This is absolutely delicious and a great value! 89 points Stephen Tanzer “… black cherry and violet scents and a kick of cracked pepper. Tightly wound at first, then opens to offer chewy dark fruit flavors and a touch of mocha. Dusty tannins add grip to the finish, which leaves cassis and bitter cherry notes behind.”

2009 Barco de Piedra  Ribera del Duero ($13.99) Special price while the first shipment lasts! A small production red which shows the bright fruit and power of Ribera del Duero. Oak aged for 5 months, it displays enticing violet aromas with fresh notes of blackberry, hints of blueberry and tar, a firm structure and a depth of flavor. This is from a great vintage and has the stuffing to age for a year or two, but it is already  irresistible.

2010 Bodegas Hnos del Villar Oro de Castilla Verdejo, Rueda ($13.99)special price while first shipment lasts. Wines made from the Verdejo grape are easily oxidyzed, so the del Villar brothers take every possible step to ensure freshness and flavor, including harvesting at night. The wines are fermented with the natural occurring yeasts from their own grapes, and the wine undergoes battonage which provides a creamy texture. Rich lemon-lime flavors have herbal notes and a hint of grassiness. This is an excellent wine with salty foods or fresh shellfish. 

2005 Barón de Magaña, Navarra ($19.99) Expressive and complex with ripe dark fruit, spice and fine leather. Well-balanced, bright spicy fruit with very well integrated lively tannins. Aged in French oak for 14 months. “Good lift to the Bordeaux-like aromas of redcurrant, dried cherry, tobacco and rose. Juicy and focused, offering sweet red fruit and floral flavors and a lashing of cracked pepper. Finishes lithe and sweet, with a note of candied cherry. This is delicious now.” 90 points Stephen Tanzer

2007 Raul Perez Ultreia de Valtuille, Bierzo ($87.00) 100% Mencia, fermented in egg shaped Austrian barrels. 315 cases made, 15 for the U.S. This wine is an exraulperience; like a gift that keeps on giving, it continues to entrance over the course of an evening as it develops complexity with air, displaying earth notes, subtle spice and silky red fruit. One of the most graceful wines I’ve ever enjoyed. The wines of Raul Perez must be tasted to be believed! 

 Barrel tasting with Raul Perez

 

 Photos by Sharon Baden 

NEW PRODUCTS ARRIVED MONDAY! 

ybar vin

 

4 pallets of paella cookware. All sizes of carbon steel pans and burners are back in stock including the complete paella burner and pan set. We’ve added a stainless steel flat-bottom paellera for cooking on ceramic stoves (40 cm – 9 servings).  

 

3 pallets from Ybarra, including one liter wine vinegar ($4.99) and three liter PET Extra Virgin Olive Oil ($31.99).  water

 1 pallet of green glassware with four new styles, including “water” and “wine” tumblers.

 

2 pallets of terra cotta cazuelas have restocked all sizes .

Traveling to Spain in early September?   

Bodegas Artadi is pleased to announce the inaugural harvest party for their El Sequé winery in Pinoso, Alicante Spain on Monday, September 5, 2011. It was ten years ago when Artadi first arrived in the D.O. Alicante to learn, enjoy and share their experiences around the Monastrell variety. Today, Artadi crafts two beautiful wines from this region made of young and old vines: Viñedos de El Sequé and El Sequé. We carry the delicious 2009 Viñedos de El Seque ($10.99) here at the shop. Contact The Spanish Table, Seattle if you’d like to attend. We’d go if we could….

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Spanish Vermouth and Asturian Cider

 

vermouth 

It’s time for Spanish Vermouth!

Spanish Table Seattle Newsletter                                                           June 15, 2011      

 Perucchi Vermouth from Spainhas finally arrived — we’ve been working to bring this in for months. Made in Badalona, it comes in two styles: a dry and smooth red vermouth with notes of baking spice and a sweeter white style, redolent with ginger and cardamom flavors. Excellent in cocktails (see the Sherry-Martini recipe below), or served neat. $19.99 each

 

Sparkling Trabanco Poma Áurea Sidra de Asturias  ($16.99) is produced through the Méthode Champenoise with secondary fermentation in the bottle, utilizing only indigenous yeasts. In the glass, exuberant aromas of apples mingle with an earthy component reminiscent of the natural aromas of the cider house. Bone dry on the finish and very festive in the glass. 

The Spanish Sips and Bites  tasting is sold out, but the restaurant has given us a few slots for Spanish Table customers. Call us at 206-682-2827 or send an e-mail to seattlewine@spanishtable.com if you’d like to attend.

Date: Tuesday July 19, between 6-8 p.m at Pintxo @ 2207 2nd Avenue, Seattle 206.441.4042. Cost: $10 per person 

Spanish Sips and Bites is hosted by Pintxo Seattle and special guest, Lucia Ramos, of Frontaura winery. Join us for four savory pintxos matched with delicious wines from Toro, Rueda, Penedes, Rias Baixas, and Cava. Spain is home for Lucia and she is coming with photos, stories, tasting notes, and maps that show the rich history and spectacular range of Spanish wines. All wines tasted are available for purchase at The Spanish Table – orders placed at the event will receive a special 10% discount.

NEW WINES – A Spanish winemaker in Washington – no bull!

Idilico Wines is named after  a famous bull that performed in the 2008 Barcelona Corrida. Idilico performed so magnificently, with such bravery, that it was spared from the matador’s sword, something that very rarely happens. 

Idilico’s owner, Javier Alfonso, comes from a family of viticulturists in Spain’s Ribera del Duero. Javier himself lives in Seattle’s Wallingford neighborhood, having come here to study Mechanical Engineering at the University of Washington. As so often happens, one thing led to another. Javier now has an American wife and in the course of exploring the magnificent wines of Washington, they began making his own wines using Spanish varietals grown in the Yakima Valley.   

2009 Idilico Garnacha, Yakima Valley ($20.99) displays an old-world heritage and a refined character, very reminiscent of a Spanish Garnacha. Made with fruit from a Snipes Mountain site near Yakima, it’s 12 months in neutral French oak lend aromas of smoke and spice. On the palate, ripe red fruit, chocolate and mineral notes have lift and persistence. Velvety tannins on the finish bring you back for more of this harmonious red. We simply had to bring in this wine when we heard about Javier and tasted his delicious red! Only 74 cases made.

We also carry 2010 Idilico Albariño, Yakima Valley ($20.99), a fresh white with notes of ripe stone fruit, citrus and a zesty finish. 

Sherry-Martini

 2 ounces of Vodka
1 ounce Valdespino Amontillado Sherry
1/2 ounce dry Spanish Vermouth 

Mix all ingredients in cocktail shaker with ice. Give the shaker a good shake for about ten seconds. Pour contents of shaker into a chilled glass with two Ybarra Anchovy Stuffed Olives. If you enjoy your martini a bit on the dirty side, add a splash of olive juice from your container of anchovy stuffed olives.

 

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Cava Tasting and Party Wines

When the Thanksgiving leftovers run out, the holiday party season can’t be far behind.  We have a sensational time noshing on finger foods, experimenting with seasonal beverages and catching up with old friends – it is indeed a special time of year!  And there is absolutely nothing more festive than a glass of bubbly at a party.   Thus our Cava tasting dinner at Harvest Vine could not be more timely.  Join us on Wednesday December 8th, at 6:30 p.m. to taste the cavas of preeminent winemaker Augustí Torelló Mata. Here’s an opportunity to taste the acclaimed Kripta cava which influential French wine critic Michele Bettane described as comparable to the very best champagne.   Click Cava to view the complete menu; the cost is $65.00 per person.  For reservations, please contact Harvest Vine at 206.320.9771. “The Agustí Torelló Mata Cavas rank with the best I have tasted.”  Jay Miller, Wine Advocate

AFFORDABLE AND DELICIOUS PARTY WINES

2008 Ique Malbec, Mendoza ($9.99) Juicy and lush, this 100% Malbec has notes of violet and ripe berry. With firm structure, flavors of coffee and hints of licorice add complexity to the lengthy finish.   This unoaked Malbec is meant to be enjoyed young and is excellent served with pizza or burgers.

2009 Prado Rey Verdejo, Rueda ($11.99) 100% Verdejo, Prado Rey comes from a 75 year old vineyard.  It displays intense citrus aromas with notes of fennel.  A serious white, it is lean and steely, fresh and balanced.   It has a long and polished finish with notes of bitter almonds, characteristic of the Verdejo varietial.  This is excellent with steamed clams or mussels.

2008 Tres Picos Garnacha, Campo de Borja ($15.99) We’ve never been disappointed by Tres Picos. Reliably delicious year after year,  “The 2008 Tres Picos is 100% Garnacha old vines in which 50% was aged in tank and 50% in French oak for 10 months. It gives up a compelling nose of black cherry fruit that jumps from the glass along with earth and mineral notes. Plush on the palate bordering on voluptuous, this pleasure-bent, full-flavored effort will drink well for another 3-4 years although few will be able to resist its charms for that long.”  91 points Wine Advocate

2008 La Planta, Ribera del Duero ($15.99) La Planta is the youngest red produced by Bodegas Arzuaga Navarro, whose wines are full-bodied and suave.  2008 La Planta has fresh aromas with high fruity notes of blackcurrant, licorice, and toasty notes from noble woods.  A meaty wine with ripe tannins, it has a fine tuned velvety texture.   The finish is persistent and smooth.

Last chance to pre-order special vintages of Cune Rioja!  Bodegas Cune will be shipping a limited number of old Rioja Reservas and Grand Reservas directly from Spain in February 2011.   Pre-order now to assure availability of a special anniversary or birthday wine!   Pre-orders are due no later than December 8, 2010.   Standout offerings include a 1917 Imperial Gran Reserva, 1964 Viña Real Gran Reserva, and a 1939 Corona, (a cache of this golden-colored Rioja blanco was recently discovered during the winery’s renovation.)  There are over 30 wines available from vintage 1917 through 1995; pre-sell prices range from $68.00 for a 1988 Imperial Reserva to $510.00 for the 1917 Imperial Gran Reserva.   For a complete list and prices, just send a request to seattlewine@spanishtable.com.

NEW PRODUCTS

Seasonal Spanish Food Cookbook by José Pizarro ($32.95)  This is not a vegetarian cookbook but it’s loaded with delicious salads, soups and sautés that make you want to rush home and start cooking.   I can’t wait to make Artichoke and Sheep Cheese Salad and Green Asparagus Soup with Romesco Sauce.

New shipment of Churreras!  chur We now have plastic ($19.99) and metal ($45.99).  Fry up some of these bits of dough deliciousness and dunk them into a steaming mug of thick Spanish hot chocolate.   This indeed, is true decadence!  We also carry Blanxart, Amalia and Valor brand hot chocolate mix.

Marcona Almond Butter: A healthy alternative to peanut butter, and a great option for those folks with peanut allergies. Marcona Almond Butter can be substituted in any recipe you would normally use peanut butter. We suggest:  Changing your PB&J into a MAB&J, high-brow take on the quintessential classic, substitute MAB for your Thai peanut sauce or fold into your ice cream. Think of it like liquid Turron!

Armenian Walnuts Steeped in Syrup: They look like black olives, but they are whole walnuts packed green in the Ararat Valley of Armenia and steeped in sugar syrup until they turn lush, sweet, tender and irresistible, a little like marron glaće, only moister. The walnuts are perfect foil for pungent cheeses, pâté or roast duck or game. You can also nibble them after dinner or slice them to decorate your pumpkin pie.

CHEESES OF THE MONTH

Caña de Oveja: This snow-white, fluffy coated, soft-ripened sheep’s milk cheese hails from Murcia, a region known for its goat milk. The pale ivory creamy interior is suave, silky tangy and spreadable. Enjoy with a glass of sparkling white wine or cava.   14.99/LB

Queso de Oveja en Aceite de Oliva: From Jumilla in Spain’s southeast, this sharp and herbaceous sheep’s milk cheese is soaked in virgin olive oil and rosemary. Tangy with a bit of harrumph! The flavors are more infused than our Spanish Table customer favorite, Rosemary Manchego!   15.99/LB

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Musing on a Wine Trip to Spain

 

   Tasting wines in El Brozal vineyard, Rioja 

Spanish Table Seattle Newsletter                   May 20, 2011               

We’re still savoring memories of our early May trip across northern Spain, where we visited 19 wineries in 15 days. At every stop, young  winemakers shared their passion for the land. Many are from families who have been viticulturists or wine makers for generations and working the land  is unquestionably their identity. Over and over, winemakers described their quest to produce wines that reflect the terrunyo, singular wines that reflect the unique conditions of each plot using minimal intervention, and without abandoning  the region’s heritage. We special ordered a bunch of these wines on the spot and they’ll be rolling in over the next few months. As they arrive, we’ll spotlight them in our newsletter. We can’t get over the sheer quantity of old vines in Spain. Old vines are less productive and thus their fruit has more concentrated flavors. We had many a vineyard lunch among these ancient vineyards.  

NEW WINES 

2005 Barón de Magaña, Navarra ($19.99) This was the only Navarran winery on our trip, but it was worth the drive just to meet this family. Owner-oenologist Juan Magaña decided 30 years ago that he wanted to produce a Bordeaux-style wine in Navarra. He located a nursery in Bordeaux (coincidentally owned by a Spaniard) that supplied Merlot vines to Chateau Petrus and other wineries. Unfortunately the government of Spain at that time did not permit the planting of Bordeaux varietials in Spain, so Juan had no choice but to smuggle the vines into Navarra. Thus was established the first vineyard of Merlot in Spain. Eventually he had to confess to the D.O. that he was growing Merlot, and not Tempranillo.   By then he was known as one of the best winemakers in Spain and had numerous awards, so the D.O. relented and authorized Merlot to be planted. Juan’s son Diego is now winemaker and continues to push the boundaries with these varietals.

  2005 Barón de Magaña is very expressive, aromatically complex with hints of ripe dark fruit, spice, and fine leather.  Well-balanced, bright spicy fruit with very well integrated lively tannins. Aged in French oak for 14 months. “Good lift to the Bordeaux-like aromas of redcurrant, dried cherry, tobacco and rose. Juicy and focused, offering sweet red fruit and floral flavors and a lashing of cracked pepper. Finishes lithe and sweet, with a note of candied cherry. This is delicious now.” 

90 points Stephen Tanzer

2010 ROSADOS ARE HERE AND THE SUN IS OUT!

2010 Pares Balta Ros de Pacs, Penedes ($12.99) A blend of Merlot, Syrah, and a touch of Cabernet.  This year’s vintage is the best ever, with a perfect balance of cherry fruit and crispness. We pre-ordered it, so many shops won’t have it for another month.

2010 Artazuri Rosado, Navarra ($9.99) From one of the best Garnacha producers in Navarra, their rosado is elegant and dry.

2010 Conde de Valdemar Rosado, Rioja ($9.99) Garnacha and Tempranillo. Fruity and fresh, this is excellent with paella.

2010 Melipal Rose, Mendoza ($12.99) Pick up some empanadas here and a bottle of Malbec rose for an easy dinner tonight!

2010 Olivares Rosado, Jumilla ($8.99) 70% Monastrell and 30% Syrah.  This is our best value and the distributor is almost out of it! Get it while you can.

We still have a small amount of 2010 Txakoli Gurrutxaga ($19.99) and 2010 Amestoi Rubentis rosado Txakolis. Low alcohol, light, with clean effervescence, the Txakoli rosados are produced in minute quantities for the U.S. market and have developed a cult following. You’ll see why when you taste one!

Spanish Table Cheese Festival Winners

Torta Del Casar is a definite customer favorite and a rare cheese to find in the states. Rich, buttery, nutty, herbaceously sweet with a long piquant finish, this raw sheep’s milk, washed rind cheese hails from Extremadura. Torta del Casar takes 20 sheep milked twice daily to create a single wheel of cheese.  Serve by cutting off the top of the torta and spooning out the delightfully oozy center. This cheese is perfectly balanced and complex; the more you enjoy, the more nuances you discover!

Queso Curado al Azafran is a delicate nutty sheep’s milk cheese blended with saffron. The mild flavor tones accentuate the floral notes of saffron. This cheese is best enjoyed on its own or with a refreshing glass of Rueda.

Montcabrer is constructed like no other cheese and is made by queso design freaks. The young fresh goat milk is aged in a thick rind of charcoal and vegetable oil. The cheese remains semi soft and creamy encased in its rind and develops beautiful musty mushroom tones. If I didn’t know any better I would guess Montcabrer is a buttery truffle cow’s milk cheese.

Rhapsody in Blues

Monje: Creamier than Cabrales, wrapped in chestnut leaves, and so blue it would put Billie Holiday to shame. Monje has a velvety smooth texture with a wonderful pepperiness and lingering hazelnut finish. This Asturian farmhouse blue has been made with raw cow’s milk for over 100 years. Robust and creamy, its complex flavors will unfold on your palate.

Autor is a raw goat’s milk blue from Quatratondo, in southeastern Spain. This artisan farmstead goat cheese is curdled with thistle rennet and aged for 60 days in an underground cavern. Full-flavored with a hearty goat tang and mild natural blue flavor, Autor has persistent hints of grass herbs and citrus.

PORTUGUESE CHEESES 

São Miguel -We were finally able to get our hands on this mammoth 20 lb. wheel o’ cheese from the Azores. Wonderfully buttery, with a texture like a creamy Colby cheddar. Sao Miguel has pleasing sweet grass flavors that reflect the Azores Islands’ terrain. The perfect table cheese to enjoy with cured meats, olives and, sun-drenched red wines.

São JoãoKissing cousin to its substantially larger compadre, São Jorge, this petit creamy pancake-looking cheese is also from the Azores. Sao João is a much younger, creamier version of São Jorge. Very approachable with a slightly elastic texture, mild sourness, and pleasant grassiness.

We are fully stocked with over 50 different Artisan Spanish cheeses and 15 Portuguese cheeses.

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Filed under Cheese, Food, Red Wine, Rose, Spain, Travel, Uncategorized

Easter Eggs and Semana Santa

Ready For Feria de Abril, Sevilla   

Spanish Table Seattle Newsletter                                                                  April 21, 2011

Not unusually, my Easter celebrations as a child involved hunting for colored eggs. My Dad liked an excuse to give us money, so he’d write prices on a few eggs, hide them, and the finder could redeem them for a quarter or even a dollar!  Later that evening, we’d sit down to a baked ham and scalloped potato dinner with my extended family. Easter in Spain is one of the most somber and dramatic holidays, especially during Semana Santa. Sevilla and many other cities shut down for the week proceeding Easter and religious penitents march in processions through the streets until Easter Sunday. The music of Semana Santa is as serious as its subject, the crucifixion. The central song is the Saeta. Sung from balconies to the processions of penitents below, it starts with a moan, descends into a lament and ends in a groan. Often grouped with this music is Misas Flamencas, flamenco music which is performed in a religious context.    Two weeks later, Sevilla completely switches gears and closes down again for the Feria de Abril, a joyous week of music and dancing Sevillanas, one of the most glorious events of the year!   One of my best trips to Spain was to the Feria with my dance class… a week of dancing, tapas, and non-stop fun with an exceptional group of flamenco afficiandos.

WINES 

2009 Señorio de Garci Grande Verdejo, Rueda ($15.99) This fresh white has aromas of pear and green apple with hints of anise. There’s a noticeable weight on the palate, along with flavors of melon, citrus and herbs.   The zesty finish is clean and long. Delicious! 

2006 Abadia Retuerta Rívola, Sardon de Duero ($15.99) This isn’t a new wine on our shelves, but the 2006 vintage is so tasty that we bought up a quantity before it runs out. 60% Tempranillo and 40% Cabernet, Rívola brims with juicy red and black fruit.  Notes of cedar, spice and herbs are given lift by abundant minerals. Full-bodied, with firm tannins from 12 months barrel aging,  this savory red has a fresh and lingering finish. Highly recommended!

Special wines arrived today!

2006 Aalto, Ribera del Duero ($58.00) Aalto is a partnership between Mariano Garcia, renowned former winemaker at Vega Sicilia and Javier Zaccagnini, former President of Ribera del Duero’s governing body. “Sexy, highly complex bouquet of blackberry, blueberry, truffle and smoked meat, with a sexy floral undertone. Weighty yet graceful, offering sweet dark berry flavors and suave candied violet and clove qualities. Impressively fresh and focused wine, with strong finishing spiciness and a lingering note of dark berry preserves-and drinking well right now.” 92 points Stephen Tanzer

2006 Aalto PS, Ribera del Duero ($120.00) “The glass-staining 2006 Aalto PS was aged for 32 months in 70% new French oak. It emits a super-expressive aromatic array of pain grille, crushed stone, lavender, spice box, and blackberry. Firm and structured on the palate, it has a boatload of intense, succulent, spicy fruit, ripe tannin, and impeccable balance. Drink this lengthy, powerful effort from 2016 to 2036.” 96 points Wine Advocate

2007 Chryseia, Douro ($50.00)  The 2003 Chryseia was one of the best Portuguese reds we’ve ever tasted, and thus when we were offered a case of the spectacular 2007 vintage, we jumped on it. It sold out so quickly that we got the only case in the Northwest from the first shipment. Another shipment may arrive in the future, but don’t wait if you love powerful, complex, Portuguese reds! “Pure and brambly, showing fresh, up-front aromas of raspberry and plum, with flavors to match. There’s a well-defined minerally essence to this, followed by a long finish of vanilla and cream, with hints of French roast. Drink now through 2014. 2,965 cases made.” 93 points Wine Spectator

EVENTS

Friday April 22 is Earth Day. The Pike Place Market has teamed up with The Nature Conservancy for Picnic For The Planet. 11:30 AM to 1:30 PM.

Flamenco de Raiz, direct from Spain, performs at Kirkland Performance Center on April 29 and 30th, and on May 1 at Sleeping Lady Theater, Leavenworth WA. Don’t miss this if you are an afficiando of flamenco puro!

RECIPES

Brightly dyed, hard-boiled eggs have to be disposed of after the Easter egg hunt. Spanish tapa bars show great inventiveness in creating the gourmet hard boiled eggs. Alioli or romesco sauces can be mixed with the mashed yolk of a hard boiled egg and then used to refill the white. A sprinkle of smoky La Vera pimentón, paprika made in Spain from red peppers dried slowly over oak wood fires, and a dusting of minced parsley add the finishing touches. Here is something, actually two things, a little more complex because we use the whites for one tapa and the yolks for another.

BABY SHRIMP MEAT STUFFED EGGS

Makes 24 tapas

¼ teaspoon Sweet smoked pimentón

½ cup Mayonnaise (commercial or homemade)

½ pound Baby Shrimp Meat

1 dozen Hard-boiled eggs

12 Lemon stuffed olives, cut in half lengthwise for garnish

Combine the first three ingredients. Half the eggs and remove the yolks. Fill the cavity in the egg halves with the shrimp mixture. Top with a lemon stuffed olive. ¡Ole!

EGG YOLK-ROMESCO MONTADITOS

At this point you are looking at a dozen left-over egg yolks. Use them to make Montaditos, two dozen little open faced sandwiches.

12 Hard-boiled egg yolks

¼ cup Romesco sauce (commercial or homemade)

½ cup Alioli  (garlic mayonnaise – commercial or homemade)

pinch Salt

grind Black Pepper

24 slices Small Baguette

24 Ripe olives, pitted (optional)

2 tablespoons Minced Parsley (alternative)

In a large yellow mortar, mash the yolks, romesco and alioli into a paste. Cover each of the bread slices with this mixture. Top with an olive or sprinkle with minced parsley.  

One more!  Click Basque for chef Gerald Hirogyen’s shrimp and egg skewer recipe.

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Padron Pepper Plants and Empanadas This Friday

 

Pick Up A Padron Pepper Plant This Weekend

Spanish Table Seattle Newsletter                                    April 14, 2011

Tomorrow, Friday, April 15th kicks off sales of Padron Pepper plants. Unfortunately it’s too early to plant them outside, so keep the plants in a warm and sunny window until Memorial Day. Give them fertilizer so they’ll be strong and ready to produce peppers when they go outside. $4.99 each.   

 If you’ve never tasted these habit forming peppers, here’s how to enjoy them at their peak:  Pick them when they are no more than 3 inches long, take them inside and immediately fry in olive oil until they are blistered. Remove from heat, sprinkle with sea salt and eat as soon as they cool down. Be warned: occasionally you’ll get a hot one! This is part of the appeal.

Starting tomorrow, we’ll be carrying freshly made, ready-to-eat Empanadas every Friday and Saturday. Owner Rodrigo of Maria Luisa Empanadas will deliver them at noon and feature six flavors, including vegetarian. They are $3.00 each, with a 10% discount for purchases of 6, and 20% off for a dozen. Great for parties! We’ll be getting 4 dozen on Fridays and 8 dozen each Saturday, so please pre-order if you’d like to pick up a large quantity.  

On Tuesday April 19, 2011 we've got a special dinner coming up at The Harvest Vine featuring the stellar wines of Rioja's Bodegas Ontañón. Fifth generation family member Raquel Perez Cuevas will be in town and will guide us through an evening of wines paired with The Harvest Vine's always glorious food. $65.00 per person, includes four wine flights - 2008 Vetiver Blanco, 2007 Ontañón Crianza, 2004 Ontañón Reserva and 2001 Ontañón Gran Reserva. Click Ontanon Dinner for the menu. 6:30 Guest Arrival.

A shipment of flags, decals and lapel pins just arrived. Use them to decorate at parties, or show your colors at a Sounder Game!

We sell fresh Macrina baguettes every Friday and Saturday, regular and sourdough. Pick up some cheese and a fresh baguette for lunch!

GREAT VALUE WINES 2009 Fillaboa Albariño, Rias Baixas (now $12.99, regularly $16.99) special price while supply lasts. Produced with estate-grown fruit, Bodegas Fillaboa makes only a single bottling of each vintage for the U.S. market to prevent bottle variation and ensure quality. 2009 was an excellent vintage, and Fillaboa displays spectacular aromas of citrus, pear and green apple. Elegant and with intense minerality, it is clean and fresh on the palate. A well integrated acidity and balance enhance its complexity and finesse. This spectacular Albariño has a lingering and dry finish.

2008 Graffigna Centenario Reserve Malbec, San Juan Argentina ($9.99) 80% of Argentina’s wine is produced in Mendoza Province, and it is the origin of most Argentinean wines that reach the USA. In contrast, Graffigna winery is located in small-scale San Juan, north of Mendoza in the foothills of the Andes Mountains. Fruit for 2008 Centenario Reserve Malbec comes from Pedernal Valley and is grown at an altitude of 4600 feet. Nights are cool at this elevation which preserves acidity in the grapes, resulting in outstanding complexity and a leaner style of Malbec. Red and black berry fruit flavors have lift and abundant minerality, and the oak aging gives a delicate spiciness. Smooth and elegant, Centenario Malbec completely over delivers for the price. Perhaps because Graffigna has been making wine since 1865?

2009 La Vendimia Rioja ($12.99)  Made with organically grown grapes and unfiltered, La Vendimia expresses the full potential of a young Rioja wine at a budget-friendly price. Aged in used oak barrels for 5 months, it offers up spiced fruit aromas and notes of currants.  Its bright red fruit is rich and layered with flavors of vanilla, baking spice and a hint of wild herbs. With its lingering finish, this is a lot of wine for price!

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