Sainsburys Winemakers Selection, DO Moscatel de Valencia, Valencia, Spain, NV
Moscatel is one of four sub-zones of the region of Valencia. It is near-coastal at low altitude, with a hot climate, suiting the heat and drought tolerant muscat of alexandria, which is typically bush trained, as protection against the heat. It is a thin-skinned variety producing large bunches of large berries, which are susceptible to mildew, rot and understandably, pests.
In common with other areas, such as Languedoc-Roussillon, muscat of alexandria is used to produce luscious sweet wine. Moscatel de Valencia is fortified to halt fermentation, to give a sweet wine with 15-18% abv.
This wine: varietal muscat of alexandria, synthetic cork closure, 15% abv, Sainsburys, £5
WSET style tasting note (wine)
Appearance: clear and bright, medium intensity gold, showing tears.
Nose: clean on the nose, of pronounced intensity, youthful, with aromas of muscat, ripe quince, a rich citrus blossom note, lightly flavoured marmalade, pineapple juice and a slight spicy edge.
Palate: a luscious wine, medium (+) acidity, fortified low, a full body, medium (+) intensity, a smooth viscous texture, with flavours of muscat, over-ripe yellow peach and orange marmalade. A long length, with an acidity cleansed persistent muscat flavoured finish.
Quality: a very good quality wine, with acidity almost perfectly balancing alcohol plus the high level of residual sugar. A wine with both a strong flavour intensity and high level of flavour concentration, which follow through to the long aromatic finish. However this wine shows virtually no complexity, showing everything up front as it were.
Readiness for drinking/potential for ageing: ready to drink now, will hold for a year. If kept for longer the pretty aromatic notes and flavours will turn towards geranium, become less attractive, and finally unpleasant.