Cara Nord – Rosat 2017 & Spain’s new rosy face
For anyone who reads the news you’ll have noticed we have some political “issues” in Spain/Catalunya to put it lightly. Despite their not being featured in the news as much like last October, they haven’t gone away. Wine however is not one of those problems and to some degree, is the temporary solution to them.
To talk about rosé wines in Spain used to mean that you conjured a mental image of athis more densely-colored style of rosado that fancy wine types would say is ‘Tavel style’ instead of ‘Provence style’. And it tasted it as well given that while lighter than a full red, it didn’t have that freshness and crisp purity seen in the Provençal style that’s become all the rage as of late. Honestly, I never could see what the appeal of this older style actually was given that many large producers were using their younger and/or scabbier fruit in it, so by and large, it was never a ‘quality’ wine, just something less heavy than a full Spanish red.
Producers across Spain have seen that the rage of lighter rosés has taken the world by storm. It’s not just a ‘chick drink’ any more and has in turn fostered that most wonderful of hashtags I can’t but hate, #brosé. Yay. But this universal appeal is a great thing as it means that in Spain, where vintage and ripening is rarely a problem, many have woken up and said, “Oh, you want that kind of rosé? Well why didn’t you say so? We could have been making that this whole time!” and thus we’ve seen them surge on to the market by the hectoliter.
While nearly the entire top third of Spain (and Portugal for that matter) is likely able to produce wonderful rosés, Catalunya has the advantage of having a few more grapes up the proverbial sleeve when it comes to this style of wine. I’m talking about Trepat. Actually, I’ve been extolling Trepat because it’s one of those grapes that in some future wine prediction article I’d posit to be a rising star.
Crisp, clean, a lovely color, and most importantly, low in alcohol, it has all the ingredients to make a massive boom in the wine market. Catalunya has excellent growing conditions for it in DO Conca de Barberà, which is something of a continental/Mediterranean climate with elevation in some spots that makes for soft, lilting wines that still have plenty of tangy character.
One producer there, Cara Nord, I’ve reviewed previously and have enjoyed the watching the evolution of the project. This rosé (or rosat) that I received was, in that lovely term from British, stonking. Sampling it showed excellent depth, range, and articulation but once I was done with my notes I had a bit of cured meats and cheeses with it and thus crossed the Wowza Frontier. Normally I’m a bit ho-hum in terms of food and wine pairings as they’re usually just “good”. But in this case, the Rosat Trepat simply oozed with pairing goodness to the meal and I can’t but highly recommend the wine. While brilliant on its own, it just begs to be had with a picnic lunch out under the requisite dappled shade of a large oak with a view of, well, something lovely to match the wine. Company fully optional.
Cara Nord Rosat 2017
Light crimson bordering on bronze. Strawberry creme, flecks of blue fruit, light herbal notes of bay leaf, lightly earthy with clay notes. Very crisp red cherry notes on the palate, medium plus acidity, bit of pithy lemony notes that trails off in the finish with the blue fruit notes coming back. Very fun but drink it now.
11.5% 100% Trepat 11€
**- Q 90- Q