Diorama Garnatxa 2011

Reviewed by Neil Morris - 14 April 2013

diorama-garnatxa-2011Style: Red

Variety: 100% Garnacha

Alcohol by volume: 14.5 %

Year: 2011

Producer: Pinord

Region: Terra Alta D.O - (Catalonia)

The region

Terra Alta DOThe Terra Alta DO is located in the south of the Catalonia region in the province of Tarragona. The name translates as the 'High land' and the landscape is typical of inland Mediterranean terrain; where rugged limestone mountains rise from hidden river valleys and are cloaked by forests of oak and pine. For centuries the limestone-rich soil has been conditioned by the farming of olives, nuts and vines This agriculture combined with the effects of the continental climate, has resulted in a prominent soil type known as 'Panal', which has a sandy texture due to erosion by high altitude winds.

The vines are mainly grown on terraces formed on slopes between 350 and 550 metres but they are not restricted to these areas. The main red grape varieties used are Garnacha Tinta, Garnacha Peluda, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cariñena, Syrah, Merlot and Tempranillo, and the rare Morenillo variety is also making a comeback. The white varieties include Garnacha Blanca, Parellada, Macabeo, Moscatel, Chardonnay, Chenin and Pedro Ximénez.

The Mencia grape is native to the north-west of Spain and dominates the wines from this region. Many wines use only 100% Mencia grapes to fully showcase the character of this versatile grape. The different terrains can produce very different results from this single variety and Bierzo wines can offer everything from soft, fruity and delicate wines to the more powerful and complex, mineral-laden styles.

The other main red grape variety used in Bierzo is Garnacha Tintorera and the white varieties used include Godello, Doña Blanca, Palomino and Malvasía.

The wine

Appearances can be deceiving and at first glance, this Diorama Garnatxa from the Pinord winery appears to be thin and watery with a pale pink colour that does not raise expectations. Then the smell hits you and you are pleasantly surprised by the fresh blasts of cherry fruit and sweet vanilla.

The sweetness continues with a sensational flavour that is somewhere between ice cream soda and dandelion and burdock. It is fruity, smooth and very easy to drink without being one dimensional. A confident wine with a bold personality; it is sweet, floral and spicy and also delivers a slight hint of citrus which provides a satisfying and moreish combination.

This is a wine than under-promises and over-delivers; it is more refined than you expect and has a flavour profile that should have wide appeal - although some hardcore fans of robust reds may find it a little bit nectarous for their liking. A great modern and expressive example of organic wine making.

Rating: 8.25/10 (info on scoring system)

Pinord - Diorama Garnatxa 2011

Price: £10.80 - www.vi-vino.co.uk

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