Rioja Reserva Shoot-Out

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9-1494360416This month we have two stunning Rioja Reservas on offer. We’re calling it a Rioja Shoot out as both wines represent not only different sub zones of Rioja, Alta and Alavesa but also modern vs more classical styles of wine making.

Rioja has 3 sub-zones, Rioja Alta, Rioja Alavesa and Rioja Oriental ( Previously Rioja Baja),each one enjoys a diversity of soils, terroirs and micro-climates, each making wines of unique personality and character.

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Rioja Alta: Located on the western side of Rioja, this sub-zone has an Atlantic climate and its soils are mostly clay mixed with limestone. Due to the sub-zone’s varying elevations, the wines produced here can have great structure and high acidity.

Rioja Alavesa: The smallest of the sub-zones, it also experiences an Atlantic climate. In fact, it is coolest of the three. The soils are predominantly clay and are situated in terraces. The wines from this region tend to be lighter-bodied.

Rioja Oriental: This eastern sub-zone is  much warmer, drier climate due to the Mediterranean influence and its lower elevation. This area, composed mainly of alluvial soils, produces wines with high extract and alcohol, lower in acidity.

Both Rioja Alta and Alavesa are considered the higher quality areas. Most wines are produced mainly from the local Tempranillo grape although blends and even wines with no Tempranillo are allowed by the DO. For our purposes here comparing the ostatu_reservaReservas here’s a brief refresher on what makes a Reserva.

Reserva: Wines from the best vintages, have to be aged for a minimum of 3 years and at least one year in oak barrels.

And now the wines:

Ostatu Rioja Reserva 2011, Rioja Alavesa

Intense and clear aroma, red fruits with outstanding expressive notes on a creamy wooden background, spicy nuances and mineral touch. Tasty, fleshy, with excellent weight of fruit, firm and sweet tannins, fine toasty notes with a great structure.  From 50 year Tempranillo Vines and aged for 16 months in New French oak barrels.

1765109bGomez Cruzado Rioja Reserva 2010, Rioja Alta

30-year-old bush vine Tempranillo was hand harvested into small baskets, where the grapes undergo a three-day cold soak. The grapes were fermented in cone-shaped stainless steel vats. The juice is the racked to half French and half American barriques, of which 50% is new wood, where is ages for 18 months. The wine is blended to tank prior to bottling and laid to rest in the cold cellars for 2 years prior to release. Clean and shiny, dark red cherry colored. Very expressive nose, with the tertiary aromas of the aging displaying vanilla, cocoa and orange peel, and those of the variety, showing dark and candied fruit. In the mouth it’s rounded, fresh, with a fine acidity, silky tannins and fruit driven aftertaste. It clearly shows the character of a classical Reserva from “Barrio de la Estación.”

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International Wine days – Sauvignon Blanc

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Celebrate International Sauvignon Blanc Day 4th M078f8f3c-e314-46c4-887d-0358230d4867.pngay

Seriously wine grapes have their own days! Sauvignon Blanc’s is this friday and to celebrate we have 15% off all Sauvignon Blancs until 7pm Saturday 5th May. And if that wasn’t enough to strike your fancy we’re hosting a free drop in tasting between 6pm and 8pm on Friday evening.

As a grape that is widely planted is has many different flavours and characteristics, some apply all over the world such as it has low to no tannins, it is rarely oak aged but can be oak fermented. It also maintains a medium to high level of acidity making most wine refreshing and is almost always dry in style.

Common aromas and flavours included citrus, gooseberry, Lime, granny smith apple, pear Guava and Passionfruit. Some more funky aromas are in the herbal category like basil, green bell pepper, freshly cut grass, lemongrass, celery and the just plain strange aromas of Cat’s piss, chalk, and wet concrete.

Call in on friday a sample some of the Sauvignons we have open!

Sign up for our Summer wine Classes

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Wine School 2

We are running our wine classes again this June, Starting Tuesday 5th of June and running for 4 weeks through until Tuesday 26th June. Each class begins at 7.30 and runs for about  one and a half hours. We will sample between 8 and 10 wines each evening witht the themes as follows.

  • Introduction to Cabernet Sauvignon / Sauvignon Blanc          
  • Introduction To Pinot Noir / Chardonnay
  • Introduction To Syrah, Grenache / Riesling
  • Introduction to National Heroes ( Tempranillo / Gruner Veltliner etc. )     

LIMITED TO 8  PLACES

€120 FOR ALL FOUR EVENINGS.
THIS INCLUDES NOTES ON THE WINES AND 8-10 WINES TASTED PER EVENING.
Places can be booked by emailing tadhg@woodberrys.ie or alternatively by calling 091-533706. The course is sold as a complete 4 week course

2017 Wine Harvest, a difficult year.

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Healthy chardonnay grapes, left, and sunburned ones. Photographer: Elin McCoy/Bloomberg

January is as good a time as ever to deliver bad news, and many European countries are taking time adding up the tallies of the previous year’s grape harvest and reporting yield’s down as much as 25%. Adverse climatic conditions in 2017, including heavy hailstorms and hard frosts in the spring as well as drought in the summer, caused considerable damage to vineyards all over Europe. The result, most of the wine-growing regions in Europe are had a very low harvest for 2017.

Italian wine body Assoenologi estimated that Italy would see one of its smallest wine harvests for 60 years in 2017, down by 25% on last year, that’s a reduction of roughly 5.5 billion bottles. Things are not much better in France where they have had the worst harvest since 1945, according to France AgriMer, an agency that works with both the industry and government. Wine production to fall by 18% on 2016 after spring frosts ravage vines, but hot summer could deliver top vintages – meaning price increases across the board for low yields but higher quality fruit.

The outlook in Europe’s other large producer is not much better with Spain’s output dropping down 20% from 2016, and in Germany the estimated vintage is down 12%. All in all 2017 proved to be a difficult year in Europe.

Despite wild fires in both California and Oregon the north American harvest is likely to be similar to last year. South Africa saw very small increases in yields, about 1.4%.  In South America, both sides of the Andes were affected to varying degrees by the shift from the wetter El Niño  weather system to the drier conditions associated with La Niña weather system. In Mendoza, Argentina yields were down about 30 percent compared to normal. And in Chile yields were down about 22% due to drought and forest fires. New Zealand also experienced a drop in yeilds by about 9%. Philip Gregan, CEO of New Zealand winegrowers, attributed the smaller harvest of 2017 to wet weather over the summer season. Australia was the only country to undergo modest yield increases at roughly 5% despite a tricky vintage.

The conclusion is that unfortunately the price of your favourite wines will probably increase this year a wineries increase excellar prices to try to cover lower quantities produced.

 

 

 

New Year, New Wines

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The new year is here and I am sure you are all compiling list of resolutions, attend the gym more, get fit, drink less, eat healthier the usual. We would suggest another addition which may even fall in with the drink less weirdly. We often hear phases such as drink less drink better and while there is sound reasoning behind this suggestion we would also advocate drinking less but drinking different. The new year offers up opportunities to break old habits and why not break that habit of New Zealand Sauvignon or Rioja and try something different, who knows you may even like it better.

There are so many styles and varieties available in wine that it is a shame not to sample more than the one or two that you love. This January we would propose you drink differently. We have selected a red and a white below neither of which is two wildly different but are a good way to dip your toes into the exciting world of other wines.

Rivera Negroamaro 2016 €14.95

Medium bodied red from the very tip of the heel of Italy,  Puglia. It pours a ruby colour; complex bouquet of bitter cherries and raspberry; medium bodied on the palate with a long complex aftertaste exhibiting the pleasant, bitterish note typical of the negroamaro (the name means bitter black one). Pair this with pork chops in a spicy sauce or a sunday roast.

Quinta do Chocapalha Arinto 2016 €14.95

Hailing from the Lisboa region in Portugal this is a crisp & refreshing white that has
aromas of fresh citrus, tangy lime and minerality lead to a wonderfully brisk and crisp palate. Pair with some spicy sausages.

 

 

Autumn Wine Classes

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Wine School 2

We are running our wine classes again this October, Starting Tuesday 3rd of October and running for 6 weeks through until Tuesday 7th Novemeber. Each class begins at 7.30 and runs for about one and a half hours. We will sample between 8 and 10 wines each evening witht the themes as follows.

  • Introduction to French Wines          
  • Introduction To Australian Wines    
  • Introduction To New Zealand, Chilean and Argentinian Wines                                                                                        
  • Introduction to Spanish Wines         
  • Introduction New Old World ( Austria, Portugal & Germany)       
  • Introduction to Italian Wines

LIMITED TO 8  PLACES

€140 FOR ALL SIX EVENINGS.

THIS INCLUDES NOTES ON THE COUNTRY AND WINES AND 8-10 WINES TASTED PER EVENING.

Places can be booked by emailing tadhg@woodberrys.ie or alternatively by calling 091-533706. The course is sold as a complete 6 week course. Further info please email tadhg@woodberrys.ie

Riesling Tasting

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SoR Who 2013

As part of our Summer of Riesling promotion we will be hosting an informal Rielsing tasting in the shop. We will have every style of Riesling from bone dry to super sweet open for tasting. The tasting is Friday 7th July between 5pm-7pm in our shop on Middle Street.

Call in and try some of our favouite summer whites.

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