…a very responsible blog…catavino.net…[it's] refreshing to see such professionalism.
Robert M. Parker Jr.

Tag Archives: catavino

Please Name Me!! Newest Addition to the Catavino Family

Today, we would like to announce a brand new addition to the Catavino family. It has a crooked tail, large feet, black fur, piercing gray eyes and zero paw-eye coordination. And no, it’s not a troll, or an ewok (though that would be cool), or a spider monkey (on my future list however!). It’s 1 month old kitten. The kitten was found online and collected just north of Barcelona along a coastal frontage road in Mataro. The adoption process, albeit a bit sketchy, with me climbing into the back of a tinted black Volkswagon Passat where a plastic container of 4 kittens were tumbling among themselves in freaked out desperation, took all of 10 minutes. And although 3 of them […]

10 Delicious Reasons Why You Should Visit Portugal!

It’s been almost four years since I called Portugal my “home away from home”, translating to a half decade of savoring Portuguese food and wine on a regular basis – something I’ve never taken for granted. Consequently, while searching for information on Portuguese gastronomy, I stumbled across Catavino’s Facebook page. Immediately drawn to Ryan and Gabriella’s story, it echoed many similarities to my own adventure. So, I reached out, expressing my shared enthusiasm and appreciation for Iberian wine and food. (photo by Ryan Opaz) The shock came soon after when Gabriella hinted that I write for Catavino. Me? A writer?! Are we speaking of the same person who dreaded school writing assignments, or even writing thank-you letters?! The idea was […]

Hey, ho! Please let Pancho go! ~ Time for some wine drinking.

Despite our continued posting, we still plan on closing Catavino. Gabriella and I are finished here, onto bigger and better things, but strangely, we can’t stop just yet. I have a few more things to get off my chest, and after my recent post on the Pancho affair; I know I need to do it sooner than later. I’m overwhelmed by the response to my last post, and maybe this blogging thing could pay off if we could pump out a post like that more often. The truth is though, I don’t want too. I love wine. Actually I love flavors. Wine, beer, booze, food, foams, gels, confits and stacked culinary creations of unknown heights. I love it. If it tastes […]

Bidding Adieu to Old Favorites: Scholtz Hermanos Dessert Wine from Malaga

It is never easy to say goodbye and to turn your back on a chapter of your past – parting always hurts and today I have to say two farewells. I have been writing about Spain and Spanish wines for Catavino, as well as my own blog,  for quite a while now, and sadly this will be my last Catavino piece, but by a remarkable coincidence this week saw another last for me regarding Spanish wine. For almost thirty years I have been a devotee of a Málaga wines, especially those made by the wonderful, if rather un-Spanish sounding Scholtz Hermanos. If you have never tried a Málaga, then you have really missed out as it can be one of […]

Politics, Practicality and Pomp: The Battle Over the Future of Spanish Wine

Editor’s note: All views expressed below are solely that of the author.  All good things must come to an end. And it seems sadly appropriate that, after six years, Catavino – a site that mirrored so well all that was burgeoning and metamorphosing in the Spanish wine world – closes its doors just as the outlook for Spanish wine gets bleaker. Of course, I don’t need a crystal ball or the touch of a soothsayer to tell you that the European Economic Crisis – and Spain’s part in it – will exact its cost from the wine industry here. Perhaps the best that some can hope for is that a depressed Euro or, dare I say, Peseta will encourage export. […]

Cooking up a Farewell Feast with Moscatel

Parting is such sweet sorrow. That Bard really knew what he was talking about, didn’t he? It’s this way with Gabriella and Ryan’s announcement that Catavino is saying goodbye. My emotions were mixed at hearing the news. Initially, I was disappointed that I wouldn’t have my monthly outpouring of a favorite Portuguese dish, wine or region that I’m used to sharing with all of you through the lens of an expat living in America. And I thought of how much I would miss your comments at the end of my stories; the inspirations, the exchanges, the camaraderie of like-mindedness. Then that other saying sunk in: the only constant is change. And it sounds like Gabriella and Ryan’s change of plans […]

How it all Began, a Quick Look Back at the Early Years

When we first moved to Spain, we arrived with almost nothing. Our Spanish consisted of  ”hola”, “gracias” and after a couple of days hanging out with other Spaniards, “Vale”, the ubiquitous “ok”. Our friends were back in Minnesota, but we were in Madrid and lucky enough to have a place to live. A fellow TEFL student offered up a room in her shared apartment which was about the size of a small closet. It had two thin twin mattresses on the floor, a small wooden wardrobe, and a tiny alcove where I placed a board on a stack of boxes to create a makeshift desk. Our money was limited to a few thousand dollars in savings which we promised we […]

Starts with Goodbye, Catavino Wraps up 6 years of Iberian Wine

As many of you know, when Ryan and I married, we legally changed our last name. As I didn’t want to be called Gabriella Anderson, and he cared even less for Ryan Reynes, we opted to break social norms by designing our own surname. Having travelled through Portugal for our wedding and honeymoon, we created the name Opaz. “Paz”, in both Portuguese and Spanish means “peace”, while “O” stands for the circle of life. What does the circle mean? Quite simply, that everything in life is cyclical. Much like the gentle evolution of the seasons, the ebb and flow of the tide, the rise and fall of the sun, everything has a beginning and end. Catavino began from Ryan’s desire […]

Harvest 2011: Rioja & Rias Baixas, Spain

Having recently come back from our long and successful jaunt in Brescia, Italy, where we hosted the annual European Wine Bloggers Conference, we’ve unfortunately been unable to post on Catavino as much as we’d like. However, our friends in Spain have come to the rescue with a few updates on the 2011 Harvest. Consider this a follow-up to our first article on the harvest across the Peninsula as a whole. BODEGA MIGUEL MERINO – RIOJA, SPAIN Briones, La Rioja Alta 20 October 2011 After a not very cold winter with not much snow neither, a spring short in rainfall and warm temperatures in May and most of June, we had quite an unusual summer with thermometers much below the average in […]

Pla i Llevant: An Island Region of Growing Quality

I feel a little sheepish to admit this, but Catavino has never been to an Iberian island. Of the 30+ islands floating carelessly off the Spanish, Portuguese and North African shores, we’ve only heard rumors of their incredible beauty, natural diversity and ample tourism. The Balearic Islands have sat squarely on my radar for years, in part, because rumor has it that my great grandfather, Jose Antonio Reynes I, prior to moving to Cuba, and eventually to New York, just may have roots in Mallorca. Mallorca comes to Catavino’s pages today not because we’ve visited its shores, but because a close friend of ours was kind enough to give a tertiary introduction to its gastronomy. Marc was born in Barcelona, making […]