Gold Medal, 2008 San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition "Then we sampled "The Spaniard" named in honor of Inigo Mon...Read more...
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Food Pairings for Twisted Oak Tempranillo Blend Calaveras County the Spaniard
Gold Medal, 2008 San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition "Then we sampled "The Spaniard" named in honor of Inigo Montoya from The Princess Bride and oh, sweet Jeebus, was it amazing! This bold blend of tempranillo, grenache and graciano is aged in new French, new American and two-year-old French oak. Since two of these grapes - tempranillo and grenache - are noted for their ability to take oaking well (they're also great blending grapes) you'll be picking up rich, warm spice from the moment this wine is decanted. The graciano adds balance and a dark fruit to the mix, with a medium tannic quality on the finish." - Chuck Sudo on Chicagoist "On the nose the wine showed blackberries, black currants, spice, your favorite leather couch, cloves, and something really dark and almost earthy that I can't quite place, kind of like walking through a cedar grove. In the mouth, there are very fresh blueberries, currants, blackberries, and baking spices. Overall, the wine was very smooth with a big mouthfeel. This is a very big wine. It goes down easy and is delicious." - Sonadora on Wannabe Wino "On opening the bottle, I found the cherry and other fruit to be a little tart, along with cocoa, vanilla, and leather. Good body and well-balanced. The next afternoon opened up a whole new world. The nose exploded with cinnamon, leather, plum, blackberry, and later settled into slight notes of violets and coffee. It was like unpeeling an onion -minus the tears- as the layers revealed themselves gracefully. My tongue took turns with different dance partners: first black cherry, then fig, then pepper, a stack of smoke, and finally, cinnamon toast. We all thought it was super smooth to be a fairly young wine." - Farley on Behind The Vines Sorry! ! Made at Twisted Oak by Winemakers Of Unusual Size; this swash-buckling Calaveras blend is so big you'll need six fingers to hold the glass. It's inconceivable that one could resist the aromas of black currants and clove spices, the flavors of blueberries and plums and tannins as big as Fezzik himself. This wine will certainly leave you mostly dead. Share it with your special buttercup, a gentle giant, or the entire Kingdom... as you wish. - Back Label Geek Sheet Data for 2005 Calaveras County The Spaniard (click here for printable PDF Geek Sheet) (learn more! check out our Geek Sheet Cheat Sheat) Tasting Notes We have quite a hodgepodge of tasting notes for The Spaniard, so rather than wrap a narrative of questionable cleverness around them, we're just going to throw them right at you: "Cherry Sweet Tart" "Leather berry berry" "Oakberry pepper" "Great gams" (gams?) "Fruitalicious" "Way better than beer" "A great [Italian] red" (that was one confused taster, and we won't repeat the inappropriate ethnic characterization that rhymes with Winnebago.) Our favorite: "It's turtles all the way down!" OK, so that last one is maybe too hip for the room (you can read about it on Wikipedia) - we're pretty sure he was referring to the long finish! Production Notes In 2005 we harvested our first significant lots off of the estate vineyard at the winery in Vallecito. We were very excited about the quality and very quickly determined that this fruit would go into our Spaniard program. Our Sheep Shack Vineyard is the first block of Tempranillo we ever planted (first of anything for that matter). It is located in Murphys about two blocks out of town on a sloping south eastern facing hillside. The block has given us top notch Tempranillo consistently for about 4 years now, making it a great match for our flagship wine. The 2005 growing season started with a late bloom followed by a fairly average warming season which enabled us to acclimate the vines to the intense summer in this warm region. At the winery, we gently destemmed and crushed the fruit into small 4' x 4' boxes and fermented them over 2 weeks. The cap was punched down 4 to 5 times a day during the early part of fermentation, reducing to twice a day in later stages. After two weeks, the must was pressed and then racked into brand new French oak barrels for secondary fermentation. We then pulled out the wines, blended in the Graciano and Garnacha for depth and brightness, and then sent the wine back down to barrel for a long winter's nap before bottling. TECHNICAL NITTY GRITTY Varietals & Vineyards: 32% Tempranillo, Twisted Oak Sheep Shack Vineyard 30% Tempranillo, Spaniard block, Twisted Oak Winery 25% Graciano, Willow block, Twisted Oak Winery 13% Garnacha, Oruga and Colina Roja blocks, Twisted Oak Winery Oak Program: 70% new French oak 10% new American oak 20% two year old French oak Food Pairings: If you don't ever drink this with lamb, you're not livin' right!!
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