Category Archives: Monastrell

2008 Wrongo Dongo Monastrell Jumilla

The new vintage on this wine came in with a new label, same silly name, but this wine delivers in so many ways. Purple garnet in color. On the nose, youthful, medium intensity, raspberry, blackberry, boysenberry, meat, leather, herbs, spice, earth, and slight oak. On the palate, dry, medium intensity, medium tannin, good balance, bright dark fruit, wrapped in mineral and herbs, with a good meaty character, and a solid finish. Solid wine especially with the bbq.    

2008 Daniel Belda Monastrell Jumilla Spain 5 L Box

I had tried this out of the 750 ml format and that it was good inexpensive wine  so I had to try this, my very first wine out of a box. Ruby color, medium intensity. On the nose, youthful, medium intensity, not all that aromatic, but I was able to detect some cherry, earth, herbs, meat, licorice, and not oaky. On the palate, dry, medium intensity, medium tannin, medium acidity, red fruit, leather, spice, and earth. Pleasant but nothing all that exciting about the flavors or finish. At this kind of price I am not shocked at the quality, but pretty darn serviceable for the money.    

2007 Bodegas Atalaya Almansa

The newest hot shot wine from Jorge Ordonez that everyone is making a big deal about because it just got scored 91 points from the Wine Advocate and the distributors anticipate selling out of inside a month. A blend of Monastrell, Garnacha, and Tintorera(Alicante). On the nose, youthful, medium+ intensity, plums, blueberry, black cherry, strawberry, spice box, game, leather, hay, white pepper, some oak, and some earth. Very well rounded nose. On the palate, dry, medium+ intensity, medium tannin, medium acidity, medium body, silky mouthfeel, really nicely balanced fruit, oak, earth, spice, with a great finish. I don’t know about the 45 second finish that the review claims, but it’s worth setting a timer a checking. An A+ wine, another knockout punch from Jorge Ordonez.    

2007 Luzon Monastrell Jumilla Spain

This has been one of those go to, shock everyone with the quality for the price kinds of wines for several vintages. So naturally I jumped on a case when my rep said there was almost none left. On the nose, youthful, medium- intensity, black and blueberries, leather, meat, dried herbs, some wet earth, and some oak. On the palate, dry, medium intensity, creaminess to the fruit, black raspberry, medium- tannin, medium acidity, moderate alcohol, and moderate finish. I had high expectations for this one, was hoping for more muscle and depth, neither was there. This is however a easy guzzling wine that many others would enjoy tremendously.    

2005 El NIdo Clio


Parker gave this wine 95 points, and personally I don’t agree, compared to how dense and complex the 04 was. I felt that however great this wine was it was masked in a bit too much oak to receive that high a score. 70% Monastrell 30% Cabernet Sauvignon, made by Aussie wine-maker sensation Chris Ringland, in collaboration with the Juan Gil people. The 05 wasn’t quite as broad and complex. On the nose, youthful, med+ intensity, massively oaked, with dark berry, asian spice, herbs, toasty, not very earthy for an old world wine, and massively extracted. On the palate, dry, med+ intensity, creamy dark berry milkshake, dirt, tobacco, herbs, spice, but it’s hard to get around the oak factor. Don’t get me wrong, we demolished this bottle, and Patrick liked it so much, he stole my last sip, but he did buy it so not a big deal, normally I might get real mad over such behavior. I want more, but this lies in the Silver Oak category of too oaky for my palate, but many others will like. I am curious what my colleagues think. Any thoughts?    

2004 Bodegas El Nido Clio

My good friend and aspiring palate, Robert, bought this wine out of my business cellar the other night, along with 3 others that were half the cost. We flipped a coin to see which one we would open. The Clio won, but more appropriately, we benefited from trying this massive wine. Perhaps the darkest black purple I have seen in quite some time, and a good example of high intensity of color. Dense all the way out to the rim, and serious glass staining power. On the nose, aroma, tightly wound dark berries, exotic spices, a green herbaceousness, milkshake, toasted oak, and no detectable earth. On the palate, dry, massive mouthfilling flavor, coffee, milkshake, berries, tobacco, and leather. This is a monster wine that has quite some time till it shows it’s full potential. I’m glad I tried one of the bottles and glad I have a few more.    

2005 Luzon Verde Monastrell


Ok, tonight I went down to my buddy Ward’s Bistro in Ballard for a bit to eat and some vino. The place is called The Station, as it was a gas station at some point. Great food, $9 plates and they are ample in size and big in flavor. I tried a bunch of his glass pours, as they are a bit different than most in the city. Oh, I had the braised meat du jour , which happened to be pork shoulder. Monastrell is Mourvedre in France, seldom bottled on it’s own. In Jumilla, Spain it is king and stands alone quite well. On the nose, aroma, medium intensity, black licorice, wild berry, green herbaceous quality, Asian spice, vanilla, Earth is present, but so is oak. On the palate, a lot more new world than the nose. Dry, lots of juicy berries, and even more oak. I like this effort, not the most complex, but what was I looking for in a glass pour. This has the depth to be worth the $7.50 a glass, and not that well known organic wine at that. Thank God there are people pouring something interesting by the glass.