Anyone who really knows me, knows I’m not much of a romantic. I’m not into candlelight, I don’t actually know how to use a fork at a nice restaurant and I’ve never clamped a love lock on the Pont Neuf. That’s not to say, however, that I have never felt romance. In 2012, when the A’s swept both the Mariners and the Rangers to win the division- romance. My first taco truck experience (85th and Edes), the first time I saw Beyoncé’s XO video and the first time I tasted the Merenzao from Fazenda Prádio; all of these moments, romantic as hell.
Fazenda Prádio sits on the Miño River in Ribeira Sacra, Galicia. It is a small, family-run operation that has been farming in Ribeira Sacra for a number of years. Xabi Soeane (with help from friends, family and animals) runs a winery, a guesthouse and a restaurant in the small town of A Peroxa. Xabi thrives on being an insurgent. He spurns the use of chemicals, he refuses to be part of the DO, and each year he works to replant his vineyards to more obscure varietals that are indigenous to the region of Ribeira Sacra- whether or not his neighbors want to follow suit. To put it lightly, a little anarchy never tasted so good. The wines are some of the best coming out of Spain and they happen to be natural- if you are into that sort of thing.
Merenzao (aka María Ardoña, Bastardo, Trousseau) is a red wine grape that originated in the Jura region of France, over centuries has made its way to Spain and has found its digs in Ribeira Sacra, Galicia. It is a fantastic alternative to Pinot Noir, and when I’m playing sommelier I thoroughly enjoy introducing it to guests. On the whole, wines made from Merenzao tend to have a lot of dark red cherry fruit, a little pepper and are potentially high in alcohol. The Prádio Merenzao clocks in at 13%. The entire lineup of Prádio wines is fire. Choosing the Merenzao is like choosing Steph over Draymond, Klay, Dre…it’s hard, but it’s my favorite. It is a wine of place. It tastes like soft red fruit, graphite, dirt and the banks of the Miño River. It is the best Trousseau I’ve tasted, a sexy monkey. It pairs well with octopus, tortilla española, fresh vegetables, empanadas and Enrique Iglesias. It’s fairly limited, so if you see it around town I suggest you grab a bottle or two. I happen to have three bottles myself and, if you promise to not light any candles, I just might share one with you.
Blogged at: Mom and Dad’s
Soundtrack: Kanye West, My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy