So let’s talk wine! As the daughter of parents who are big wine enthusiasts, I have been happy to shun knowledge of good wine and be content to drink just about anything, as long as it’s cheap! But no more because in Spain you can find really good wine for really cheap. I am talking one or two euros for decent wine, and 5 euros we’re talking gran reservas. Spain is well-known for its many different types of wine. La Rioja in the north, where I’ll be living next year, is famous for its red wine, whereas Córdoba in the south is famous for its dry white wine, fino. Within the Córdoba province there is an area very famous for it’s white wines, called Montilla-Moriles. If anything, I will learn about Spanish wine-it’s impossible to avoid it here!
There are several different types of wine produced in this area, including vino joven, fino, amontillado, Pedro Ximénez, oloroso, palo cortado, and Pale Cream. The process for making these wines is very similar to that of making sherry, and it’s way too tedious to repeat twice. You can read my original long-winded blog post about that here if you are interested in the intricacies of wine production. Finos are light and bitter, whereas Pedro Ximénez is for us ladies, as its a darker, sweeter, syrup-like desert wine! Also, fun-fact, they are all aged in American oak barrels! Right on USA!
So why am I blabbering on about this? Well once a year during May (because all of Córdoba’s big fiestas are in May), they celebrate something called la Cata del Vino Montilla-Moriles (Montilla-Moriles Wine Tasting), here in Córdoba. More 20 bodegas from around the province come and set up booth/tents together along with some restaurants, where you can try all of the traditional wines and tapas from the region (C/ de Los Plateros, esquina Carlos Cano). You pay a flat entrance fee and you get a free glass to use for tasting, along with 5 different samples from any of the booths. And by 5 samples, they mean 5 glasses of wine, not including the ones that are offered to you on the house. I went with a group of friends after work one day, and after 3-4 samples, we were done! If you are in Córdoba in May, the Cata is definitely a must, unless you don’t like wine, and even then you should go anyways and eat a lot of tapas with your friends, and just drink Pedro Ximénez, because it tastes like candied fruit. Though I wouldn’t admit that to any serious wine enthusiast if I were you, since the PX is an “amateur” wine. See? It seems that Spain will make me a wine snob after all!