Tag Archives: Malbec

Rare Spanish Gran Reservas Arrive!

Spanish Table Seattle Newsletter

April 30, 2010

Last December for the first time, Bodegas Beronia opened their library of Gran Reserva Riojas for sale. Our special order of three historic vintages were shipped directly from Beronia’s cellars and arrived at Spanish Table yesterday.

Beronia was founded in 1973 by a gastronomic society and was conceived as a winery dedicated to quality, exclusively making Reservas and Gran Reservas, in the purest, most traditional Rioja style. In 1982, having exceeded its initial expectations, Beronia was acquired by Gonzalez Byass (producer of Tio Pepe sherry) who expanded production to include value priced Crianzas. (For those new to Rioja wines, the terms Crianza, Reserva and Gran Reserva refer to the aging process. Crianzas are wines matured for at least one year in oak cask and six months further in the bottle. Reservas are aged for at least three years total, with one year minimum in oak cask. Gran Reservas are produced only in great vintages and have been aged at least two years in oak casks and three years in bottle prior to release.) The Beronia Gran Reservas that we received have been aged much, much longer than a normal Gran Reserva, as they’ve been aging in the winery cellars since bottling. Ready to drink now, they would be excellent with a special Mother’s Day dinner, or as a gift.

1981 Beronia Gran Reserva ($54.00) is at its peak right now. A very good vintage, this is soft and balanced with great mouth feel. Dried fruit, leather, green tea, vanilla and dried tobacco aromas in this aged red wine.

1982 Beronia Gran Reserva ($72.00) is an impressive library offering from Rioja. A superb vintage, this is soft and balanced with great mouth feel. Sweet plum, cranberry and cherry, earth notes, vanilla and cigar box aromas in this impressively elegant aged red wine.

1994 Beronia Gran Reserva ($53.00) comes from one of the best vintages in the last several decades. Just starting to show its age with dried tobacco, baking spice, plum and dried red cherry. Nice weight and good balance. This is a treat.

Mothers Day is coming up (Sunday May 9th) and we’re stocked with gifts for cooks and specialty foods. Some gift ideas: Hand painted ceramics in various colors and shapes. Olive oil soaps from Spain and Greece scented with Magnolia or Lavender. Cookbooks are a terrific inspiration for the culinary minded. Our selection includes Spanish, Portuguese, Greek, Mexican, Turkish, Middle Eastern, Vegetarian, Cuban. Our latest favorite is Michael Psilakis’ “How to Roast a Lamb – new Greek cooking”. An assortment of extra virgin olive oils. If you’re serving brunch, pick up a rosé cava to add a celebratory touch.


New shipment of Graupera cazuelas arrived today. Now in three colors: Clay, Dark Gray and Very Red. Limited quantities available of Very Red.

Ole Ole Fresh Sausages – No preservatives, no nitrates. Available in Butifarra, Merguez, Chorizo, and Chorizo Picante.

Fresh shipment of Spanish saffron arrived this week! We air freighted one and two gram plastic boxes of the latest harvest. 1 gram box: $10.99, 2 gram box: $19.49


1998 Señorio del Aguila Gran Reserva, Carineña ($19.99) Distributor close out! A blend of 60% Tempranillo, 20% Garnacha and 20% Cabernet Sauvignon, this food friendly red is perfectly aged. An earthy and medium-bodied wine, Señorio Del Aguila has notes of balsamic and spice. Red and black fruit with licorice flavors are balanced by silky tannins. Full of finesse, it is excellent with pork dishes.

2007 Beryna, Alicante ($19.99) Beryna is produced by a talented and enthusiastic team who bought a 19th century wine estate primarily planted with old vine Monastrell. 2007 Beryna has concentrated black cherry, dried plum and boysenberry flavors with drive and focus. Made of 60% Monastrell and 40% Tempranillo, Cabernet and Syrah, it has notes of chocolate and coffee. With superb lift, mineral notes and a persistent finish, this is a structured red that is excellent with barbequed rib-eye steaks or burgers. Very much like an old style Zinfandel! “Powerful, toasty” 92 points Guia Penin

2006 Riscal Tempranillo, Castilla y Leon ($9.99) Established in 1858, Rioja producer Marques de Riscal quickly became one of the most sought-after Spanish wines. Recently Riscal began producing table wines in Castilla y Leon, crafting value wines with the same care as their top Riojas. The 2006 Riscal is a well rounded Tempranillo with concentrated red fruit. Notes of cherries, raspberries, and cola are held together by soft velvety tannins, making it a perfect food wine. This is an excellent value!

2007 Goulart “The Marshall” Malbec, Argentina ($18.99) “The 2007 The Marshall “M” is 100% Malbec aged for 18 months in 40% new French oak. Opaque purple-colored, it offers up a nose of toasty new oak, cinnamon, allspice, violets, black cherry, and blackberry. On the palate it is rich, savory, and plush bordering on opulent. With excellent depth and grip, this substantial effort will evolve for another 2-3 years and offer prime drinking from 2011 to 2029.” 91 points Wine Advocate, 90 points Wine Spectator


Shop our wine website at Spanish Table Wines.

For food, cookbooks, paella pans and all non-wine items, go to The Spanish Table website.

For the latest product news from Paris Grocery, visit the PG Facebook page.

To subscribe to Paris Grocery’s newsletter, send an e-mail to info@parisgroceryseattle.com.

Have a great week and we’ll see you soon!


Sharon Baden and Steve Winston, Owners

The Spanish Table, 1426 Western Avenue, Seattle WA 98101 phone# 206.682.2827

Paris Grocery, 1418 Western Avenue, Seattle WA 98101 phone# 206.682.0679

Hours at both stores: Monday- Saturday, 10 AM – 6 PM. Sunday 11 AM – 5 PM

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Filed under Argentina, Books, Cava, Food, france, Meat, Red Wine, Rose, Sherry, Spain, Uncategorized

Spanish Table Seattle & Paris Grocery Newsletter

February 4, 2010

We gladly waved goodbye to the construction equipment on lower Western Avenue this week. The chasm at Union and Western has been filled in and the street is now reopened to two way traffic. The detour is gone. Lots of street parking is now available, so don’t hesitate to come on down and see us!

Spectacularly beautiful, the Douro River’s precipitous terraces are the birthplace of port, Portugal’s celebrated fortified wine. But this region also produces sensational table wines which we’ve recommended for years, and these wines are finally gaining traction with wine critics.

We were fortunate to get a personal update on this area from Sophia Bergquist, owner of Quinta de La Rosa over lunch last week. Somewhat similiar to France’s wine estate classification system, in the Douro, grapes are graded from A to F based on the quinta (estate) that produced them. The steeply terraced vineyards can only be harvested by hand which guarantees gentle treatment of the grapes and selection of the best fruit. Sweltering summer heat ensures that grapes are fully ripened and generate structured reds with long ageing potential. Four out of the last six vintages (2003, 2004, 2005, 2007) in the Douro were outstanding.

Quinta de La Rosa’s fruit is all Grade A and the estate has been family owned since 1815. One of the first in the region to produce table wines, they are such a hands-on operation that owner Sophia herself has even jumped in to pick grapes during harvest. For fans of plush, complex, full-bodied reds, the wines of the Douro should not be missed!


2007 Vale da Clara, Douro Red wine ($11.99) Quinta de La Rosa purchases the fruit for this wine, which is a perennial staff favorite here at The Spanish Table. 2007 was a very good year in the Douro, giving Vale da Clara rich and perfectly ripened black fruit. With notes of black olive and a touch of herbs, it has ripe tannins and a long, smooth finish. It’s a great quaffer!

2006 Quinta de La Rosa Douro Tinto ($19.99) A blend of grapes that are used in port wine, this elegant red table wine is made from hand-picked, estate grown fruit. Enticing floral and ripe fruit aromas make it hard to tear your nose away from the rim of the glass. On the palate, delicate flavors of black cherry and currant have lift and a persistent minerality. Silky tannins and great balance make this wine a pleasure to drink.

2005 Quinta de La Rosa Douro Reserve ($42.00) Vintage 2005 in the Douro was rated 93-95 by The Wine Spectator, producing “balanced and powerful reds.” The Quinta de La Rosa Reserve is no exception. A rich and juicy red, it displays notes of coffee and smoke, earth and minerals. It’s got the stuffing to age well for another five years, and it will be a big hit now with any fan of muscular reds.
2006 Poeira 28 Barricas Douro ($54.00) Quinta de La Rosa’s winemaker, Jorge Moreira, owns his own north facing plot uphill from QdLRosa and Poeira is his personal project. Made from old vines, only 28 barrels (barricas) were produced. Terroir driven, Poeira is distinctive, angular and restrained. Loaded with elegance and finesse, it’s brooding black fruit is concentrated with notes of crushed rock. It’s got the backbone to age well for through 2017, although it’s absolutely delicious right now.

Throwing a Super Bowl party? Our favorite party foods are grilled chorizo sausages (try the GEM Basque chorizo which is now back in stock!) served with slices of Ibsa Roasted Red Pepper strips.

A cheese plate is always a hit – we recommend a mix of sheep’s milk cheese such as Roncal or Nisa, Caña de Cabra goat cheese, Young Mahon cow’s milk cheese and a creamy blue cheese such as Bleu de Basque. Serve alongside Spanish Tapas Flatbreads which are now back in stock, in Rosemary and Manchego Cheese flavors.

And which beer to serve? We’ve got Estrella Damm beer from Spain, Casa beer from Morocco, Sagres beer from Portugal, Tecate and Bohemia beer from Mexico.

COLLECTOR’S CORNER: Available next week by special order (6 bottles available):

2007 Alvaro Palacios L’Ermita, Priorat ($672.00) Alvaro Palcios is one of the star winemakers of the Priorat, and was an early pioneer of this region. 100% old-vine Garnacha produced from 70-year-old, head-pruned vines from a dramatically steep 2-hectare hillside. Harvesting is by hand, with multiple passes to pick optimal fruit. Aged in 100% new French barrique. Only 250 cases produced. “Bright ruby. Intense, mineral-driven aromas of spicy red berries, candied cherry, blood orange and potpourri, plus a sexy Asian spice quality. Tangy and sharply focused, with striking purity and energy. Sweet raspberry and cherry flavors are framed by silky tannins that are quickly absorbed by the fruit. Manages to be deep as well as vivacious, showing strong finishing minerality and a lingering note of star anise. This plays Lafite to the Dofi’s Latour.” 94 points Stephen Tanzer

Our new sister store, Paris Grocery, has an outstanding Facebook page with their newest cheeses, charcuterie and wines. Check it out and become a fan.

Shop from home on The Spanish Table’s websites. Visit

The Spanish Table wine website for Spanish, Portuguese, South American vinos as well as Madeiras and ports. Orders are shipped from our Berkeley CA store which may have different inventory and prices than our Seattle store.

Click on The Spanish Table to purchase food, books, cookware and other non-wine products.


Padron pepper seeds: Spring can’t be far behind when the seed packets roll in the door! Start these indoors early, so that the plants will be full size by June and ready to start producing peppers.

Mloukia Leaves: We searched high and low for this herb after reading about it in Paula Wolfert’s Mediterranean Clay Pot Cooking (p. 158). As described in the cookbook, the flavor is “fascinating – tastes like nothing else.”

5 liter plastic jugs of EVOO $49.99 We’ve had many requests for large containers of extra virgin olive oil since we ran out of the Ybarra brand. We’ve now got Sol de La Mancha brand in stock.

A new shipment of cazuelas arrived Monday. We’re now restocked with all sizes, in charcoal, and traditional earth color.

We look forward to Saveur Magazine’s “Top 100”

issue every January. It’s a compendium of the best kitchen products, new personalties in the culinary world, places foodies should know about, and implements of the year.We’ve stocked these hard to find items from Saveur’s list:

Salt cod (called Bacalao in Spain; Bacalhau in Portugal)

Argentinean Malbec wines (we’ve got 50 + Malbecs to choose from)

Lupini Beans

Olive Oil Tortas (new flavors Seville Orange and Sesame Sea Salt)


Have a great week and we’ll see you soon!


Sharon Baden and Steve Winston, Owners

The Spanish Table, 1426 Western Avenue, Seattle WA 98101 phone# 206.682.2827

Hours: Monday- Saturday, 10 AM – 6 PM. Sunday 11 AM – 5 PM

Paris Grocery, 1418 Western Avenue, Seattle WA 98101 phone# 206.682.0679

Hours: Tuesday- Saturday, 10 AM – 6 PM. Sunday 11 AM – 5 PM. Paris Grocery is closed on Mondays

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Filed under Argentina, Cheese, Food, france, Meat, Portugal, Red Wine, Spain, Uncategorized

A New Twist on an Old Favorite

63August 21, 2001

Numerous years ago, before we discovered Spain, we took many a road trip to Northern California in the old Dodge van. We camped at Crater Lake, spent time in Mendocino, and loaded up the van with Zinfindels from Napa and Sonoma. So when we were invited to do a cookbook signing and paella demonstration at the Point Reyes Farmer’s Market last weekend, we couldn’t pass it up.  

62Point Reyes is located about an hour north of our Mill Valley shop. It’s a forty mile long peninsula jutting into the Pacific ocean and is populated with dairy farms whose placid bovines roam bucolic pastures and provide the raw material for the famous Point Reyes cheese.

The best part of making a paella at a farmer’s market, aside from the great breakfast choices like pork-tomatillo panini, is the array of incredible fresh ingredients.64

We brought Zoe Meats chorizo with us, and added fresh onions, garlic, squash, peppers, green and purple beans, piquillo peppers, Ferrer brand Sofrito sauce, saffron, rice and chicken stock and finished it with squash blossoms. It looked amazing and the flavor was sublime! It was the best kind of make-it-up-on-the-spot recipe but also may be tough to replicate.

And the next time you’re in Point Reyes, make sure to dine at Osteria Stellina. It was fantastic!


Being close to our Bay Area locations meant that we also cooked paellas at each store.

Our Amontillado and Chicken Paella with Chorizo is always a crowd pleaser and the ultimate in simplicity, perfect for a paella demo. Recipe from The Spanish Table cookbook: (serves 4)65


1/4 cup Spanish olive oil

4 chicken thighs

Approximately 16 strands of saffron

1 large onion, chopped

1 tablespoon minced garlic

2 links Spanish chorizo

2 cups Spanish short-grain Valencian rice, preferably bomba

1 cup medium dry Amontillado sherry

3 cups chicken stock

Heat the olive oil in a 12-inch paella pan and brown the chicken. Stir in the onions, sautéing until wilted, and then add the garlic, cooking another minute or two. Add the chorizo and cook until the fat is released. Then stir in the rice to coat and add the sherry.

Bring to a boil. When the sherry is absorbed by the rice, add the stock and saffron, reduce the heat, and simmer until the rice is done, about 20-25 minutes.


66Jehan cleaned up the pan in front of our Berkeley store.




2008 Cabriz Encruzado, Dao ($13.99) A single vineyard wine, Cabriz is made from the Encruzado grape, and produced in limited quantities. Aged 6 months in oak using the battonage process, it has flavors of crisp pear and buttered toast . A creamy texture with a dry and lingering finish make this a wonderful accompaniment to seafood in cream sauce.

2008 Sete Cepas Albariño, Rias Baixas ($17.99)

Very much a family project, Sete Cepas refers to the wine making team of 7 brothers. Produced near the coast, each sip has the tang of sea air with aromas of white peach. Loaded with minerality and lemon zest flavors, Sete Cepas has lively acidity with notes of stone fruit, pear and great finesse. Excellent with shellfish!

Luis Pato Maria Gomez Bruto Vinho Espumante ($14.99) The Maria Gomez grape (called Fernáo Pires in other regions of Portugal) has extraordinary aromas and capacity to produce distinctive wines with strong character. Maria Gomez Bruto is a light and crisp sparkling wine showing the delicate floral and orange-lime citrus flavors characteristic of the grape. A persistent, dry finish with soft bubbles make this a terrific choice for pairing with rich cheeses or seafood.

Luis Pato Casta Baga Bruto Rosé Vinho Espumante ($14.99) Luis Pato is one of the most respected oenologists in Portugal and has earned the nickname “King of Baga”. The Baga grape is complex, with powerful tannins and ripe berry flavors and Casta Baga Bruto Rosé exemplifies Luis Pato’s mastery of this grape. A crisp and dry sparkling rosé wine, it shows minerality along with its full fruit flavors. The typical structured tannins are subdued into a silky finish in this delightful rosé. Absolutely divine with roast suckling pig, the signature dish of Pato’s region.


2007 Andeluna Malbec, Mendoza ($8.99) Hand crafted in collaboration with Michel Rolland, Andeluna Malbec has a touch of Merlot and Cabernet, and 7 months aging in French and American oak. Round and ripe flavors of plum, cherry and blackberry are rounded out by notes of chocolate. Lush black currant and coffee compliment the sweet tannins and produce an exceptional value. Serve it with grilled lamb burgers!

2005 Rondan Crianza (Rioja) $11.99 The new vintage of Rondan Crianza is one of our favorite value Riojas. Produced from 90% Tempranillo and 10% Garnacha, the grapes are hand picked and aged in American oak for 18 months. With intense depth of black cherry flavors and notes of pepper and musk, this is a traditional Rioja with clean fruit flavors. Ample but not overpowering tannins with balanced acidity make this a great food wine. Serve it with pork or rice dishes.

2001 Marques de Murrieta Castillo Ygay Gran Reserva Especial Rioja ($60.00) Just arrived! 2001 was a legendary vintage, and this wine was featured in last week’s New York Times Rioja article. “Impressively complex bouquet of dried red fruits, tobacco, cedar and potpourri. A spicy, subtly sweet midweight, offering lively redcurrant and bitter cherry flavors and very soft tannins. The smoky finish features a strong echo of cedary spice.” 92 points Stephen Tanzer

To read the New York Times article, follow this link: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/08/12/dining/12pour.html?_r=1&scp=2&sq=rioja&st=cse

2006 Don Nicanor Blend, Mendoza ($17.99) A blend of equal parts Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec and Merlot, this Argentinean red is full-bodied with concentrated ripe berry and casssis notes. 12 months of aging in new French oak provide notes of vanilla and lush tannins. The pure finish has a touch of cherry skin and black tea. This is a complex wine, extremely well balanced and a fantastic match for grilled steak with blue cheese.


Zoe Meats Chorizo

New Sale Price $20.99

Our all time favorite chorizo is now on sale. These ‘food service’ size chorizos are over a pound and a half. They are the definitely the best value and the tastiest chorizo in our case. We recommend slicing and serving as a tapa or making Bocadillos.

Zamorano Cheese

Most of you are familiar with this artisanal Spanish cheese produced in Castilla Leon, in the Zamorano province. It is made with milk from the Churra Eve sheep which is high in fat and gives particularly high-quality milk. Complex, full bodied, moist and subtly tangy with lingering parmesan notes. Serve Zamorano with ham, melon, pears, tomatoes, crusty bead and a solid Spanish red wine.

Now available pre-cut in our deli grab-and-go case. Sale price: $17.99/lb.



The New Portuguese Table cookbook by David Leite ($32.50) Written by the American-born son of an immigrant Portuguese family, David Leite learned to cook hearty Portuguese dishes at his grandmother’s side. Traveling to Portugal, the author discovered the traditional ingredients reimagined in modern cuisine and was inspired to write this cookbook. Leite melds the classic and contemporary, introducing innovative modern dishes in over 100 recipes.

Dende Oil – Also called palm oil, it is an essential ingredient in moqueca, the sumptious Brazilian seafood stew

Homemade Plum Membrillo from Spain, made from quince and plum.

Valenciano crackers flavored with Rosemary

Reganas Andalucian tapas crackers made with Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Guarana Brazilian soft drinks, now including Diet!

Wild Lavender Honey from Murcia Spain – Excellent with goat cheese!



Join us at Taberna del Alabardero for a selected tasting of Jorge Ordonez wines, on Wednesday Sept. 2nd, 6 p.m. Special attendance by Sara Floyd, M.S. who will talk about the five wines, each paired with a separate course. $75.00 (tax and service charge not included). For reservations and information: 206.448.8884, for more details, click this link:




Saturday August 22nd Carmona Flamenco, featuring guest artist Ana Montes. 8:00 p.m., Solstice Cafe, 4116 University Way $20.00 information: 206.932.4067 http://www.fanw.org


Have a great week!




Sharon Baden and Steve Winston, Owners

The Spanish Table

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Filed under Books, Cheese, Events, Food, Meat, Portugal, Recepies, Red Wine, Spain

A Segovian Gold Mine

SegoviaThe Elusive Pago de Carraovejas

July 30, 2009

Segovia3Established by Segovian restauranteur and sommelier Jose Maria Ruiz, Bodegas Pago de Carraovejas has become one of the crown jewels of Ribera del Duero wines. Jose Maria’s insistence on excellence has driven these wines onto the “must have” list of all quality restaurants in Spain. Only 10% of production is exported. Every vintage quickly sells out and allocations are becoming more difficult to come by. Our Bay Area stores have been lucky enough to obtain a small amount of the recent vintages, and it knocked my socks off when I tasted it earlier this year. We’ve had countless customer requests for this wine and for months the distributor has repeated “it’s coming..” it’s coming…”Segovia4

Happenstance rewarded us once again in Spain. Unwittingly, we stumbled into a tapas gold mine at El Descanso de Juan Pacheco in Segovia. Along with fantastic food, Pago de 

Carraovejas was being poured like water!

Crianza, Reserva, Gran Reserva… by the glass… by the bottle… no limits.

And now that we’ve returned from Spain, finally, last week we received two cases of the 2006 Crianza. Another case “is coming..”

A single vineyard wine, 2006 Pago de Carraovejas Crianza is a blend of 85% Tempranillo, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon and 5% Merlot. Aged for 12 months in oak barrels, it is an intense cherry color with purple tones. The nose is filled with ripe fruit aromas of black berries and spices. Flavors of tar and boysenberry slowly spread over the palate with glycerin contributing a rich fruity mouth feel. Well integrated oak, notes of coffee and cacao with supple tannins. Concentrated and intense, it has herbal notes with a smooth and persistent finish. A powerful and effusive wine, here is a rare opportunity to experience this wine outside of Spain! 2006 Pago de Carraovejas Crianza (Ribera del Duero) $40.00. Only 34 bottles available.



2007 Torres Sangre de Toro Tempranillo, Penedes ($7.99)  The Torres family has been producing wines in Catalunya since the late 1800’s. Their consistent production of quality wines at all price levels has earned them a loyal customer base. Sangre de Toro Tempranillo is a new wine developed by Torres. An absolute bargain, its juicy cherry flavors with hints of smoke have solid complexity for the price. “Impressively supple wine with strong finishing sweetness and focus. Packs a lot of punch and honest fruit for the money.” 87 points Stephen Tanzer

2007 Vina Gormaz, Ribera del Duero ($9.99) A former co-op, this recently-privatized company controls the majority of acreage in Ribera del Duero’s Soria province. Containing the highest remaining percentage of old vine, head-pruned Tempranillo, Vina Gormaz’s focus is upon complexity and elegance without oak aging. The 2007 vintage has deep wild berry aromas, fruit forward juicy blackberry flavors and ample but balanced tannins. This tasty wine is one to enjoy young.

2007 Tres Ojos Old Vines Garnacha, Calatayud $9.99)  Exemplifying all of the wild red fruit and spice of pure Garnacha, Tres Ojos is a pleasure to drink. Juicy black cherry flavors have just enough white pepper spiciness to provide zest. Clean, with energizing lift and a persistent finish, Tres Ojos a great all-around food wine and a great value!

2007 Finca Resalso, Ribera del Duero ($13.99) Producedby Bodegas Emilio Moro, Finca Resalso is a wine produced from Moro’s younger vineyards. Four months of aging in oak give structure with fine tannins, vibrant fruit flavors, and well balanced acidity. “Dark ruby-colored, it emits an enticing perfume of mineral, violets, black cherry, and blackberry. On the palate it reveals an elegant personality, savory, spicy flavors, good depth, and a fruit-filled finish. Drink this tasty effort over the next four years.” 90 points Wine Advocate

2006 Luigi Bosca Malbec Reserva, Mendoza ($19.99) Produced from low yielding vines at an altitude of 960 meters, made of 100% Malbec, it is aged 12 months in oak casks. Full bodied with aromas of bing cherry, it has flavors of concentrated kirsch liqueur, notes of coffee, spices and pepper. Elegant, with round and sweet tannins, this has the potential to age for up to 10 years. When we tasted this against a limited release ($120.00) Malbec, Luigi Bosca completely over delivered for a fraction of the price. Highly recommended!


Last week’s New York Times article about wines from D.O. Ribera Sacra generated a ton of inquiries. We’ve located another wine mentioned in the article: 2007 Guimaro, (Ribera Sacra) $17.99 “Light bodied, juicy, inexpensive wines with a welcome earthy touch.”



When the thermometer tops 90 degrees and your house has no air conditioning, what do you do? My favorite heat-beating activities: Go swimming in Lake Washington, have a picnic at Lincoln Park, and sip a cold, cold, beverage.

Some our our favorite cold drinks:

Estrella Damm Beer from Spain: $9.99 per six pack

Cusquena Lager Beer from Peru: $9.99 per six pack

Sagres Lager Beer from Portugal: $8.99 per six pack

Casa Beer from Morrocco: $1.99 per 11 oz bottle

Estrella Damm Inedit Beer: Developed by Ferran Adria of El Bulli, this beer was specifically developed to serve with food. $9.99/750 ml bottle

2007 Senorio de Sarria rose, (Navarra) Seafair Special — Was $9.99, now $5.99! Navarra is the traditional home of Spanish rosados. Senorio de Sarria’s bright aromas and flavors of fresh strawberries are front and center in this tasty rose. 100% Garnacha, it is crisp, dry and the ultimate refreshment on a hot day.

2009 Casal Garcia rose vino verde ($8.99) took Seattle by storm during our first heat wave. We couldn’t keep it in stock and neither could the distributor. But thankfully it’s back, just in time for the hot weather! Light berry and pie cherry flavors with a thirst quenching effervesence and 10.5% alcohol make this a perfect wine to sip at an afternoon get-together.

2008 Protos Verdejo, Rueda ($10.99) The grapes for this wine are hand picked and kept at low temperature to preserve freshness. Protos Verdejo has clean aromas of grapefruit with lush citrus flavors, vibrant acidity and a persistent green apple finish. Pair this with ceviche for a light and cooling dinner.



Gardunha: A washed rind goat cheese from Portugal made with a milk thistle rennet. The semi-soft creamy texture is complimented by aromatic citrus zest. It’s lighly piquant flavor is grassy, slightly tangy & floral with white pepper and onion tones. $7.99/quarter lb.

Abrigo: 5 month-aged goat cheese in the format of Tronchón from the town of Catí in the region of Valencia. Abrigo is wonderfully herbaceous,sweet, grassy, slightly piquant and full-flavored with a lingering tangy finish. $5.99/quarter lb.

Serra de Estrella: Queijo Serra da Estrela comes from one of the coldest and highest regions of Portugal. These savory wheels of raw sheep’s milk cheese are made with cardoon thistle, raw sheep’s milk, and salt and can boast Portugal’s DOP name protection. Traditionally scooped out of its leathery cloth-bound rind with pieces of hearty peasant bread, Serra is a a soft, gooey, mildly herbaceous delight. As the wheels age, the paste becomes harder and chewier, but no less delicious. Pair Serra da Estrela with spicier reds like Pinot Noir or Syrah. $10.75/quarter lb.



Roland brand Duck and Pork Pates

La Espanola brand Piquillo Stuffed Olives

Dried Red Guindilla Peppers

Despana brand Chorizo and Morcilla

Costa Peruana Aji Amarillo chili paste from Peru. No preservatives!

Grey Mullet Bottarga Powder


Stay cool, enjoy the Blue Angels and the Hydroplane races this weekend, and stop in to pick up your picnic supplies!




Sharon Baden and Steve Winston, Owners

Spanish Table

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Filed under Cheese, Food, Meat, Red Wine, Spain

Visit to Vega Sicilia

Visit to Vega Sicilia

June 25, 2009


vega siciliaWe got home last Friday night after visiting fourteen Spanish wineries in twelve days. Twelve long hedonistic days of a no-holds-barred food and wine tasting extravaganza. Exactly my kind of travel. Now home, our cleansing diet of salad and water is already wearing thin…

Stay tuned for the next few weeks, because there’s a ton of great news from our trip. We visited Bodegas Jose Pariente and Martinsancho in Rueda; Emilio Moro, Bodegas Mauro, Bodegas Conde and Protos in Ribera del Duero. We spent the last 4 days in Rioja visiting Bodegas Muga, La Rioja Alta, R. Lopez de Heredia, Bodegas Ramon Ayala e Hijos, Remelluri, Bodegas Contino and Vinedos Sierra Cantabria.

I will never forget driving into the legendary estate of Bodegas Vega Sicilia. Established in 1864 when 18000 vine shoots from Bordeaux were planted here, they have been producing one of the world’s best and most mythical wines since 1915. No expense is spared in the pursuit of perfection, from the immaculate fermentation rooms, new French oak barrels which are replaced every year, down to the best available corks which are laboratory tested before using. Its 15000 kilo French oak fermentation vats are replaced every 5 years by a crew which is brought from Bordeaux. There is no resale market for the used vats so they are made into wooden boxes for the wines. The manicured grounds buzz with prosperity and quiet confidence.

Vega’s vineyard contains 19 different soils, four grape varieties and plots with varied microclimates. They continue to innovate. A new facility soon to open will house 64 fermentation vats, allowing micro vinification with each vat mirroring the vineyard plot.


The wines of Vega Sicilia

Three wines are made on Vega Sicilia’s estate in Ribera del Duero. Unico, only produced in great years, is typically made from 85% Tempranillo and 15% Cabernet Sauvignon. Unico is aged for 7 years in a combination of large oak vats and small French barrels. It can be cellared for up to 50 years. Valbuena is made each year from Tempranillo, Malbec and Merlot and can be cellared for 25 years. Reserva Especial NV is a blend of three vintages, produced in very limited quantities.

2001 Vega Sicilia Tinto Valbuena ($176.00) Unico was not made in 2001, so the best Tempranillo grapes were put into Valbuena. “Wonderfully perfumed, sharply delineated aromas of fresh red berries, cherry, rhubarb, roasted coffee and vanillin oak. Supple, lush and sweet, with medium to full body, a complex array of red and dark fruit flavours, exotic spice accents and fine-grained but firm, youthful tannins.” 92 points Stephen Tanzer, 93 points Robert Parker

1996 Vega Sicilia Unico ($366.00) Vega Sicilia is characterized by unbelievable finesse, silky tannins, black fruit, structure and balance. “Complex, heady bouquet of kirsch, candied plum, cured tobacco, licorice, dried rose and cedar. Pungent herbal notes build with aeration and repeat on the palate, adding complexity to the deep, ripe cherry and dark berry liqueur flavors. Remarkably elegant wine with precise cherry/berry flavors and a slow-mounting mocha quality on the long, sappy finish. There’s a very impressive interplay of fruit and tannins here.” 94 points Stephen Tanzer, 93 points Wine Spectator

1998 Vega Sicilia Unico ($400.00) ” Exotic aromas of red and dark fruits, iron, dried flowers, cured meat and tobacco are strongly reminiscent of a top vintage of Chateau Haut-Brion. Luscious cherry and cassis flavors display a superb balance of depth and structure, offering noteworthy power but a weightless quality that is simply uncanny. Candied flowers, smoky minerals and vanilla bean add complexity and extend through an endless finish. I’d love to sneak this into a tasting of 1998 Saint-Emilion and Graves wines in ten years or so.” 96 points Stephen Tanzer, 98 points Robert Parker

2003 Pintia, Toro ($50.00) Made from 100% Tinto de Toro, this is from Vega Sicilia’s estate in Toro. The first vintage was 2001. ” The 2003 Pintia (100% Tinta de Toro aka Tempranillo) is a powerful, opaque purple effort that spent 12 months in new French oak. The expressive nose offers toast, vanilla, charcoal, and blue and black fruits which jump from the glass. There is a boatload of tannin but more than enough fruit for balance. Currently the 2003 is tight, firm, and a bit austere but a few years of bottle age should bring things into harmony.” 92 points Wine Advocate



Pulque La Lucha– Frieda Kahlo’s drink of choice!

Framani brand Salametto Piccante chorizo: Brick-red in color and seasoned with pimenton de la Vera. Piquant and slightly smoky. About 12 inches long, 3/4 pound. Slice in 1/8 to 1/4 inch thick pieces.

Zoe Meats Chorizo, Locally Made, No Nitrates: We sold out of our first order in 4 days and quickly reordered. A favorite of local chefs, Spanish Table customers and staff! Rich red texture, smoky, earthy, sweet and tangy. Perfect for tapas, paella and Bocadillos.

Our Favorite Queso Reggianito is finally back in stock! $9.99/lb

Garrotxa Bauma is a special young Artisanal Garrotxa from Catalonia. This particular Garrotxa is exceptional with nuances of nuts and flowers and hints of thyme and rosemary. The texture is smooth and velvety with a long grassy finish.

Vallee d’ Aspe is a wonderfully earthy raw milk sheep and cow’s milk cheese from the Pyrenees. This mature Basque region artisanal cheese has well balanced hay tones with a vibrant tanginess.

Bottarga is the salted and dried roe of gray mullet and tastes of iodine and light fermentation. It is a flavor agent that plays off other ingredients, great on summer salads, pastas, or beans. “Try it sprinkled over fresh oysters.” Eric Stone

On sale

Matiz Fig cake ($7.99). A perfect complement with sheep milks cheese.

Veigadarte, now $22.99/lb. The soft ripened tangy goat cheese from Leon.


vats at bodegas alion







  Fermentation vats at Bodegas Alion

2002 Alion, Ribera del Duero ($48.00 special price!) One wine is produced at Vega’s separate estate, Bodegas Alion. 1991 was the first vintage of this Bordeaux-style modern wine made from 100% Tempranillo. Half of the grapes come from the Vega Sicilia estate; the other half from Alion vineyards. “While 2002 was a lesser vintage, you would never know it from tasting the 2002 Alion, Saturated purple in color, it offers up an exotic nose of coconut, espresso, herbs, black currants and cherries. Rich and complex on the palate with lots of glycerine and layers of black fruit flavours, it has a pure, long finish that goes on and on.” 94 points Wine Advocate

2004 Alion, Ribera del Duero ($82.00) “The 2004 Alion is inky purple-colored with an alluring perfume of toasty oak, lavender, violets, mineral, blackberry, and blueberry compote. This is followed by a full-bodied, rich, opulent, wine with incipient complexity, and notes of licorice, mocha, and espresso emerging on the palate. The lengthy finish is pure and persistent. Give it 3-5 years in the cellar and drink it through 2025.” 96 points Wine Advocate


Last call for Padron Pepper plants! We’re waiting for the crop in Oregon to get ripe so that we can offer these tasty peppers. In the meantime, we’re harvesting padron peppers from our own plants, thanks to the warm June weather. We’ve still got a few plants left. $4.99 each.

Stop in soon and we’ll give you some travel tips for Ribera del Duero and Rioja.



Sharon Baden & Steve Winston, Owners

Spanish Table

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Filed under Cheese, Fish, Food, Red Wine, Spain, Uncategorized

Great Memories

tst_501Too often, days fade into memory like the Bainbridge ferry disappearing into fog. But there are also times that are simply unforgettable, such as our trip to Cordoba where we waited in line for hours to see a flamenco concert we’d stumbled upon by accident. It was a sensational show featuring Jose Merce, Jose Menese and Chocolate. The raw emotions I felt that night turned me into an aficionado of cante flamenco.

The next morning’s visit to Bodegas Toro Albala was just as memorable. For starters, it was raining so hard that the wine maker had to drive us across the parking lot. Situated in a former electric plant since 1922, the tiny bodega is a hands-on operation which produces phenomenal sherries. Known for their dessert wines such as the Don PX Gran Reserva, they tasted us through their selection and I was blown away by the Fino Electrico. All of Toro Albala’s sherries are made from 100% Pedro Ximenez which has sufficient residual sugar so that fortification is unnecessary, in contrast to sherries produced in D.O. Jerez from the palomino grape. We’ve stocked the Don PX Gran Reserva for years but the rest were not available until now. This week we received 4 new sherries from Toro Albala.


Fino Electrico ($11.99) Aromas of yeast meet pungent flavors of green olive and almonds. Bone dry, intense and great with salty jamon iberico.

Amontillado Viejisimo ($29.99) This superb wine is an average of 30 years old. Great intensity of rich roasted nuts, dried fruit and leather with a seemingly endless finish.

Oloroso Viejo ($17.99) From soleras and reserve stocks approaching a century in age, Oloroso Viejo displays a round, velvety texture with aromas of butterscotch. Essentially dry, it is also rich with notes of caramel and a dry persistent finish.

Cream PX ($17.99) A blend of 10-year-old Oloroso which has been enriched with Don PX Gran Reserva. A complex and refined palate caressing wine, it melds flavors of dried fruit and raisins with balanced acidity.


2004 Castell de Les Pinyeres, Montsant ($15.99) A blend of Grenache, Carignan, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Tempranillo, this is an old world wine with panache. “Energetic spiced raspberry and cherry on the nose, with white pepper and cinnamon qualities adding complexity. Fresh, finely etched red fruit flavors are intense but almost weightless, with bracing minerality adding nerve. Pure strawberry and raspberry flavors dominate the long, refreshingly brisk finish. There’s a pinot noir-like vivacity to this wine that is extremely appealing.” 90 points Stephen Tanzer

2005 El Castro de Valtuille, Bierzo ($34.00) Winemaker Raul Perez is breathing life into these old vineyards. Made from vines between 50-60 years old, El Castro de Valtuille is 100% Mencia. It has spent 14 months in one year old barrels to let the intense fruit shine through. Elegant, tannic and structured with a persistent finish, this has amazing concentration. Absolutely wonderful! 90 points Stephen Tanzer, 92 points Robert Parker

FELIZ CINCO DE MAYO! Need ingredients for a party this weekend? Try some of our Mexican specialties:

Habanero lollipops ($1.59) Warning! Very hot adult candy. Marilyn says “Yum – tingles the tip of your tongue.”

La Morena Chipotle Sauce $2.79/7 oz Smoked hot peppers essential for many Mexican recipes

Cocina Mestiza salsas ($7.99/22 oz) Choose from Serrano, Chipotle or Habanera. Grab some chips and the appetizer is ready!

Los Chileros New Mexican whole dried peppers, posole, chile powder, chicos y mas.

We have an extensive selection of general and regional Mexican cookbooks, from $5.99 and up.


2007 Juan de Valdelana Rioja ($9.99) Made of 90% Tempranillo, 5% Graciano and 5% Viura, this young Rioja has plenty of verve in a traditional style. Valdelana has cherry aromas with flavors of black currant, boysenberry and a touch of spice. Well balanced with a persistent finish, this wine has enough acidity to balance out paella or grilled sausages.

2008 Higueruela, Almansa ($9.99) Higueruela is made from 100% Garnacha Tintorera (also called Alicante Bouchet), from low-yielding vines between 30 and 80 years old. Aged in stainless steel tanks, it has a fruity aroma which reveals black cherry flavors and moderate tannins. Higueruela has an appealing earthiness with great lift on the finish. 87 points Jay Miller, Recommend Best Buy

2005 El Cipres Malbec, Menoza ($9.99) 100% Malbec from the 70 year old Don Angelino vineyard at 2800 feet above sea level, El Cipres presents a delicious blend of red and black fruits supported by soft, smooth


tannins. Smoky and meaty, serve this with a slab of grilled beef and chimichurri sauce.

Isastegi Basque cider ($10.99) is back in stock at long last! We now have two distinctive ciders in stock. Isastegi is tart green apple flavored with a fresh finish. Bereziartua cider ($9.99) is loaded with fermented fruit. Try one of each and compare!

Seven Fires, Grilling the Argentine Way by Francis Mallmann ($35.00) We ate at Mallmann’s 1884 Restaurant in Buenos Aires and it was an amazing experience. When South America’s most venerated chef published a cookbook, we had to stock it. Filled with mouth watering photos of everything from empanadas to assorted meats cooking over coals, if you like playing with fire, this is a must-have book.

Clos Mogador extra virgin olive oil ($37.00): Produced in limited quantities by Rene Barbier’s Priorat estate, this is a cold extraction of arbequina, rojol and empeltre olives. Amazingly buttery with grassy notes, it is full flavored with a peppery finish. So good it’s hard to stop dipping bread into it.

Now back in stock: Choricero dried peppers ($19.99/7 oz)

Access from the Pike Place Market: The stairs between the Market and Western Avenue will be closed for several months for construction and utility work. In the meantime, the other stairs are still open and the elevator is working. The market is installing signage to help folks find their way to Western Avenue.

We hope to see you soon, and have a great week!


Sharon Baden and Steve Winston, Owners

The Spanish Table

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Filed under Books, Food, Sherry, Spain

Cock A Doodle Doo

April 23, 2009
Food writer Nancy Leson’s blog has released a flock of calls and emails here at the shop.   What’s all the twittering about?  California wine producer E.J. Gallo has filed a lawsuit against the Spanish Table for selling “Gallo” brand fideua pasta, produced in Barcelona.  “Gallo” means rooster in Spanish and icons of the bird are seen all over the Iberian peninsula.  Sadly, we can’t afford the fight to sell our favorite brand of pasta, so we’ve found a replacement brand of noodle.   Stop in and get one of these Gallo collector items before they sell out!    To read Nancy Leson’s blog:  http://blog.seattletimes.nwsource.com/allyoucaneat/2009/04/20/gallo_crows_well_sue_you_spani.html
To watch the King 5 TV report: http://www.king5.com/business/stories/NW_042109WAB-winery-gallo-KC.fb370cdf.html

Fideau, or fideo, is a dish made in a paella pan with short pasta noodles, garlic, broth and whatever else you’ve got on hand.    To use those Spanish noodles, try this recipe from The Spanish Table Cookbook:
Fideo Pasta with Seafood in Oloroso Cream Sauce (serves 4)
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon garlic, finely chopped
1 pound salmon, or a 1 pound mixture of shrimp meat and crab
½ cup dry Oloroso sherry
3 cups clam juice or water
½ pound fideo pasta
1 cup half-and-half
1 tablespoon minced parsley
Heat oil in a 12-inch or larger paella pan and cook the pasta until it turns golden.   Remove pasta from pan, reserving the oil.  Add garlic to pan and cook until soft.  Add the seafood and saute for 1 minute on each side.   Add the sherry and clam juice, then bring to a boil.
Add the pasta and return to a boil. Reduce the heat and cook until the pasta has absorbed the liquid and is al dente, about 8-10 minutes.  Add the half-and-half and parsley and cook until incorporated.    This is even better with a bowl of alioli (garlic mayonnaise) served on the side.
“When fideua is outlawed; only outlaws will have fideua.” Steve Winston

COLLECTOR’S CORNER On Easter weekend, we opened and drank a bottle of 1968 Vina Bosconia Rioja.  In 1968, when the grapes used to make this wine were growing, I was stationed at U.S. 6th Army headquarters in San Francisco.  Recovering from the wounds I received in the infantry (173 Airborne Brigade) in Vietnam, I was drinking, ironically, Gallo Hearty Burgandy by the jug.  My palate has matured since then.   If you are old enough to remember 1968, we have one bottle available of 1968 Vina Tondonia Rioja ($327.00).   Steve Winston

CHEESE CORNER Pata Cabra is a unique goat’s milk cheese is from Zaragoza, made in a brick shape. It is a washed rind cheese which is dense, smooth, creamy and mildly piquant. Faintly goaty, lightly lemony, fresh, earthy and full of character with sweet herbaceous overtones. Pairs perfectly with Albariño or Godello white wines.

– Jorge

Celebrate Earth Day by planting a garden!    A a new shipment of padron pepper seeds has arrived, just in time to start germinating.   If you’ve never tasted a padron pepper, they are a small piquant green variety from Galicia.   They grow well in the cool northwest and are best  enjoyed when they are not over 3 inches long.   The larger they are, the hotter they can be!

2007 Dom Martinho rose, Estremoz Portugal ($8.99) Rothschild-Lafite acquired this estate in 1992 and since has brought the vineyards back to immaculate condition, as only the Rothschilds can do. Dom Martinho rose is fresh and clean, with vibrant strawberry-raspberry flavors. With great acidity and hints of mineral, this is a perfect wine to kick off the rose season with!
2006 San Isidro Cepas del Zorro Dos Ano Monastrell, Bullas ($8.99) The region of Bullas is near Jumilla in Southwestern Spain but has a superior high and dry terroir. Produced from vines as old as 60 years and at 2100 feet elevation, this is a powerfully authentic wine. With fruity raspberry aromas on the nose, it has a brawny mid palate with mineral notes, hints of spice and plenty of tannic structure. Aged two years in the bottle but without any time in barrel, Cepas del Zorro is rustic and meaty. Great with barbecued ribs!
2007 Valdemar Tempranillo Rioja ($9.99) New on the market and bursting with vivid boysenberry fruit, Valdemar Tempranillo is a must-try for those looking for a great paella wine. With just the right amount of acidity and moderate tannins, it deftly balances any rich dish or roasted meat. This is a red that I’ll be serving all year round.

2007 Martina Prieto Pariente Verdejo, Rueda ($15.99) Martina’s mother, Victoria, is said to produce the best white wine in Spain under their famous estate name, Jose Pariente. Martina, an enology student, is making her own wine with her mother using extreme methods such as harvesting grapes at night to lock in the fresh aromatics. Martina Prieto sings with flavors of creamy grapefruit, ripe pineapple, lime, flint, and a hint of cinnamon. Vibrant with acidity, it is a great pairing with octopus ceviche.
2006 Naiades, Rueda, Regularly $23.99, now on sale for $19.99. This is absolutely one of the best white wines I’ve tasted. The Naiades vineyards were planted in the 19th century with ungrafted Verdejo vines. Surviving generations of harsh climate, poor soils and phylloxera, these vines produce the extraordinary fruit that goes into Naiades. With aromas of beeswax and dried flowers, the oak is evident but muted. Full bodied, creamy and rich, it has great balanced acidity with flavors of buttered toast, melon and citrus. “The barrel-fermented 2006 Naia Des is 100% old-vine Verdejo sourced from ungrafted 80- to 100-year-old vines. The nose is slightly toasty but the fruit comes through with plenty of citrus, mineral, and floral notes. The oak treatment seems to have resulted in a creamier texture. The wine is nicely balanced, medium long, and may evolve for 1-2 years although it can be enjoyed now.” 90 points Jay Miller
2006 Luigi Bosca Malbec Reserva, Mendoza ($19.99) The 2005 Luigi Bosca Reserva Malbec was a sensational Malbec and quickly sold out. The 2006 vintage just arrived, and it has all the rich smokiness, structure and balance of the 2005. “Full ruby-red. Musky, vinous aromas of blackberry, mocha, espresso and tobacco. Suave, juicy and palate-coating, with a distinctly saline element adding complexity to the flavors of raspberry, tobacco, smoke and green olive. Finishes with fine-grained tannins and lovely aromatic lift. A distinctly soil-inflected wine with loads of personality-and an excellent value.” 90 points Stephen Tanzer

Have a great week, and we hope to see you at the shop.

Sharon Baden & Steve Winston, owners
The Spanish Table


Filed under Cheese, Recepies, Red Wine, Spain, Uncategorized