Cellier de Capcanes, Mas Donis, Negre, DO Montsant, Tarragona, Catalonia, Spain, 2008
On DO Montsant
This DO, currently amounting to about 2000 ha of vineyard, was established in 2002, having been carved out of DO Tarragona. It almost encircles DOQ Priorat, with altitudes of 200-700 metres, averaging 360 metres. Soils are mainly chalky clay, along with some granite and slate .
The climate though inland, at 10-30km from the Mediterranean coast, is sunny and sheltered with dry summers, with annual, autumnal rainfall of ~400-600 mm.
Permitted varieties , reds, are cabernet sauvignon, samsó (aka cinsaut), mazuela (aka mazuelo, carignane), garnacha negra, garnacha peluda (hairy), merlot, monastrell (aka mataro, mourvedre), picapoll negre (aka piquepoul noir), syrah, ull de llebre (aka tempranillo); and whites, chardonnay, garnacha blanca, macabeu, moscatell de gra petit (aka muscat blanc a petit grains), pansal (aka xarel.lo), parellada.
The main style is powerful reds, sometimes approaching Priorat quality, but without its price .
This wine: lot No. L9132B (on back label), predominantly grenache with a splash of syrah, screw-cap closure, 13.5% abv, Gauntleys, £5.95 (bin end) (03/19)
Consumer tasting note: typically grenache, on the pale(ish) side of ruby, with a nose of cooked red fruits and a hint of pine; medium bodied with a palate of red plum jam, with hints of blackberry and macerated red cherry. Finishes medium.
Drink now – RTD, but will keep for 1-2 years– Wait. No need to decant.
WSET style tasting note
Appearance: clear and bright, medium intensity ruby, showing tears [a small quantity of tartrate crystals].
Nose: clean, medium intensity, fully developed, with aromas as they come, of cooked fruit – dark red plum jam and stewed red berries, hints of pine and wax.
Palate: dry, medium (+) acidity, ripe fine grained medium (-) tannins, medium alcohol, medium body, medium intensity, a sense of sweetness in mid-palate, with flavours of red plum jam edged with a hint of blackberry, macerated red cherry, a vague hint of wood. A medium length with a clean finish of ripe red berries.
Quality: good, well balanced fresh(ish) acidity and tannins with alcohol, altogether harmonious; of moderate intensity throughout, with slightly better concentration, showing a better than simple complexity from bottle age, following into a medium length.
Drinking readiness/ageing potential: drink now, unsuited to further ageing, but will keep for 1-2 years – balanced now, fully developed, with all indicators at moderate level.