Photo by Tara Stevens
Rosado wines never seem to get taken completely seriously. There will be a flurry of interest in them in the summer, but the minute it gets cooler they’ll be forgotten until the the sun start shining on the terraces again. There is however a new breed of Spanish rosado emerging that is a far cry from the boiled-sweet pinks more typically associated with the country.
A case in point is a bottle I bought from the Celler Cal Marino (Margarit 54 (Poble Sec), tel. 93 329 4592) last night, which hails from the Rias Baixas. Now, I only ever associate the Rias Baixas with white wine, mainly albariño, so this was a surprise. As was the colour, which was almost clarete, a bright redcurrant hue made of two autoctonous grapes: Sousón and Brancellao—no, I’d never heard of them either—with fairly pungent herbal notes. Interesting.
I had heard of the wine-maker—the illustrious Cristina Mantilla, who came to the craft of wine-making from a simple love of the stuff—who makes beautiful wines, so this comes with pedigree at a bargain price of €6.95. It’s also the first rosé to come out of Galicia.
In the glass it is bright and juicy, full of red fruits, not black, with a gentle streak of acidity. On the nose there are those pungent herbal notes and a sprinkling of pepper. Perfect for autumn food then, I thought. I drank it with a rich lamb and pear tagine and can’t think of anything that would have matched the food better. Don’t let it get too cold though. Seven to 13ºC for rosés generally, veering towards the middle ground for this one so all those evocative foresty nuances shine through.