Nobody Drank Much Water At H20…

I hope that my latest feature on Sprudge Wine will serve as something of a lighthearted mood-lifter (tu te calmes and carry on, is perhaps what Thierry Puzelat might say…?). It’s a write-up of the raucous and extremely well-curated two-day natural wine fair H20 Vegetal, held last month in Catalunya, Spain. You can read it here

xRachel

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Tempranillo Time on Eater!

photo by Alex Ulreich for Eater
photo by Alex Ulreich for Eater

I discovered some really amazing bottles of Tempranillo while working on this article. I think it’s really cool to study a grape this way, and see how variations in climate, viticulture, and oaking practices can produce radically different versions of the same varietal. It also sounds like some really interesting, political changes are at work right now in the Spanish wine industry, something I plan to keep my eye on!

Check out my article on Eater here. Happy weekend, all!

 

Beyond Over-Oaked Garnacha And Tempranillo, At New East Vill Spot xYz

One of my fondest memories of graduate school is hanging out at Spain, a super old-school restaurant on W 13th Street where about five bucks gets you a glass of the house red, plus plates of tapas, like greasy meatballs and potato chips, served by grumpy old Spanish men in suspenders. It was charming, and I didn’t care what kind of juice I was drinking back then – but the good news is that it’s now possible to enjoy updated, sophisticated Spanish cuisine alongside elegant, easy-drinking wines that don’t destroy your mouth with tannins.

Forget the oaky, jammy stuff that for too long defined Spanish wine; there’s a whole generation of small-scale producers in Spain who are making lower-alcohol, less oaky wines, often with unusual and indigenous varieties and unexpected flavors. Now, New York City has its first restaurant featuring an array of these wines, the new East Village spot xYz. Check out my write-up of the resto and Alvaro de la Viña’s game-changing wine list, over at Gothamist. (For more on the new wave of Spanish natural wines, see my piece for Saveur from a few months ago.)