When you ask yourself what country devotes the most land to vineyards, which comes to mind? France, certainly, possibly the United States, but the fact is the country with the most land devoted to vineyards is Spain, and it’s really not even close. Spain has over 10,000 square miles of vineyards, nearly 3 million acres! China recently moved up to #2 in vineyard acreage at 1.9 million, ahead of France, but still far short of Spain. With that much lush land devoted to vineyards, it’s no wonder there are such good wines coming out of Spain.
Case in point: the very affordable Breca, a wine that I have enjoyed for several years, and which continues to be a solid choice year after year. As you can see (left), the 2011 gets a 91 Point rating from the IWC, and the 2010 got a 94 rating from Robert Parker.
Breca is a phenomenal wine that I have consistently found for less than $20. It’s made from 100% old vine Garnacha, one of the most widely planted grapes in Spain (also known as Grenache in France). Garnacha is found in many French Rhone blends, but in Spain it often stands alone.
Warning: Breca is not a pop and pour wine. Pop the cork, let it breathe, and you’ll be rewarded with round blackberry and cherry flavors, and aromas of vanilla and cinnamon. It’s nicely balanced with pepper and oak, and a beautiful long finish. This wine will keep for days – you may even like it better on day two, as the tannins soften a bit. I don’t know how a wine this good sells for as little as $15. You’re not going to find a better QPR (Quality to Price Ratio) than this.
If you’d like to try interesting wines like this at our next Wine Wednesday Tasting Party at The Wharf Tavern, click here to win a spot on the guest list!