I really love Catavino – it’s such an informative and innovative source of information on Spanish & Portuguese wines. The food of the region is key, but it’s just as vital to know about the great wines available too. This is the place to find out!
Jose Pizzaro http://www.josepizarro.com

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Iberian Spotlight: The economics of the 2009 harvest and its implications (part 2)

Editor’s note: Everyday, we come across fantastic articles on an Iberian food, wine or cultural experience by a blogger. Some are based here in Spain and Portugal, while others are chiming in halfway around the globe with a new Portuguese recipe or Spanish wine. So in the spirit of sharing quality content, we’re featuring a new section on Catavino called, “Iberian Spotlight”, which will highlight articles we feel are too great to pass by. Many of these bloggers aren’t getting the recognition they deserve, and by spotlighting them, we’re hoping to show added appreciation for their effort! After almost one month of celebrating Christmas, New Year’s and Epiphany, January is usually a pretty dead month in Rioja.  Except in the […]

Pruning & Trellising Iberia: How Spanish and Portuguese Grapes Get Their Lush Insides

Editor’s note: We’ve provided viticultural perspectives specific to both Spain and Portugal after Raymond’s article from renowned Spanish wine author, John Radford; Portuguese winemaker, Rui Reguinga; and Port winemaker, Oscar Quevedo. For many of us, this is a particularly cold winter and not one during which we would consider venturing outside for very long unless absolutely necessary. For the winery team however, there’s another important event on the annual calendar, called pruning, and it’s an outdoors all-day task not for those averse to the cold. After the harvest, and during Autumn, the vine’s leaves change colour and fall gently to the ground, prompting the plant to enter a dormant state. This state lasts well beyond other deciduous plants, awaiting that […]

Harvesting in the Priorat: Fermentation II, Pigeage, ‘Lees’, and Monitoring Fermentations

A friend of ours Raymond Magourty (Raymondo) is working the 2009 harvest in Priorat, Catalunya for Celler Mas Doix, a prestigious wine producer located in the village of Poboleda whose Parker Points have elevated it in popularity. With his background in wine education, and ambition to learn more about the practicalities of wine-making, the winery employed him as ‘bodeguero’ during the harvest. Raymondo will continue chiming in for the remainder of the harvest! You can also read the first part of this post about maceration & fermentation, his experience at the start of the harvest, visiting local wine festivals, the uncommon debate of when to pick the grapes and barrel topping, the theory of Unnatural Selection, and of course, typical […]

Harvesting in the Priorat: Fermentation I – Maceration Techniques

A friend of ours Raymond Magourty (Raymondo) is working the 2009 harvest in Priorat, Catalunya for Celler Mas Doix, a prestigious wine producer located in the villlage of Poboleda whose Parker Points have elevated it in popularity. With his background in wine education, and ambition to learn more about the practicalities of wine-making, the winery employed him as ‘bodeguero’ during the harvest. Raymondo will continue chiming in for the remainder of the harvest! You can also read about his experience at the start of the harvest, visiting local wine festivals, the uncommon debate of when to pick the grapes and barrel topping, the theory of Unnatural Selection, and of course, typical grape varieties of the Priorat. I got over half […]

Harvesting in the Priorat 2009: Differentiating Grape Varieties

A friend of ours Raymond Magourty (Raymondo) is working the 2009 harvest in Priorat, Catalunya for Celler Mas Doix, a prestigious wine producer located in the villlage of Poboleda who’s Parker Points have elevated it in popularity. With his background in wine education, and ambition to learn more about the practicalities of wine-making, the winery employed him as ‘bodeguero’ during the harvest. Raymondo will continue chiming in for the remainder of the harvest! You can also read about his experience at the start of the harvest, visiting local wine festivals, the uncommon debate of when to pick the grapes and barrel topping, and the theory of Unnatural Selection. 10th October The day’s fly by during a hectic harvest. We start […]

Harvesting in the Priorat 2009: The Theory Behind “Unnatural Selection”

Recently, a friend of ours Raymond Magourty (Raymondo) was given the opportunity to work the harvest for a Mas Doix, a prestigious wine producer in the town of Poboleda who’s recent Parker Points have elevated it in popularity, is located in the Priorat. With his background in wine, and desire to learn more about about the Priorat, the winery took him on as an apprentice during the harvest. Hence over the next few months, Raymondo will be chiming every now and then with his day to day experiences working a Cataluna harvest! You can also read about his experience at the start of the harvest, visiting local wine festivals, and the uncommon debate of when to pick the grapes and […]

Harvesting in the Priorat 2009: Philosophies Surrounding Grape Picking and Barrel Topping

Recently, a friend of ours Raymond Magourty, commonly known as Raymondo, was given the opportunity to work the harvest for a Mas Doix, a prestigious wine producer in the town of Poboleda who’s recent Parker Points have elevated it in popularity, is located in the Priorat. With his background in wine, and desire to learn more about about the Priorat, the winery took him on as an apprentice during the harvest. Hence over the next few months, Raymond will be chiming every now and then with his day to day experiences working a Cataluna harvest! To see his first article, go here and second article, here. Tuesday, September 15th Today we crushed the young vine Garnacha Negra ‘Grenache’ (approx 10 […]

Harvesting in the Priorat 2009: Wine Tourists, Wine Festivals and Grape Picking

Recently, a friend of ours Raymond Magourty, was given the opportunity to work the harvest for a Mas Doix, a prestigious wine producer in the town of Poboleda who’s recent Parker Points have elevated it in popularity, is located in the Priorat. With his background in wine, and desire to learn more about about the Priorat, the winery took him on as an apprentice during the harvest. Hence over the next few months, Raymond will be chiming every now and then with his day to day experiences working a Cataluna harvest! To see his first article, go here. Thursday, September 10th The Mas Doix bodega (winery) is in the tiny remote mountain village of Poboleda in Priorat. We don’t get […]

Harvesting the Priorat: Picking Pedro Ximenez Grapes

Editor’s Note: Have you ever wanted to work a grape harvest – picking, hauling and carrying grapes until your body feels like its been beaten by a 50 pound sandbag? Personally, I have, in part because I’m a sucker for manual labor, but also because I find farming to be a very grounding task. It takes the wine we buy in a store, bottled in sleek and attractive packaging, and brings it back to its essence. Manual harvests introduce humans back to nature, allowing us to smell the earth, feel its natural grittiness under our fingernails and taste a freshly plucked sweet grape from the vine. This process is far from clean, perfect or orderly, but it is life inspiring. […]

Quinta de la Rosa: A Winery Producing Unique Wines in the Heart of the Douro

Editor’s note: Denise Medrano, aka “The Wine Sleuth” joins us today from London – a city that currently is experiencing less rain than Barcelona (if you can believe that!). She has generously agreed to give us a little of her time, whenever time permits, to report on Iberian wines from her neck of the woods. Thanks so much Denise! I was invited to the Wine Cellar at the Bluebird on the King’s Road in Chelsea the other night for a winetasting of the well known Portuguese producer Quinta de la Rosa. Portuguese wines get a lot of press in the UK marketplace but they are still in the process of becoming household wines in England. It used to be the […]