A crisp air in the morning and fast temperature cool off at night must mean October is here! A huge thank you goes out to all our club members and regular customers. We have been open for a bit over two and a half years, and during that time you have all taken note and embraced the concept of Hidden Track Bottle Shop. We want to offer an education and experience of wine without using highly marketed brands. We offer a competitive alternative to the grocery store or national chain brands that are constantly pushed and marketed to consumers. And it seems that a local publication took note of our wine community and what we are doing. The Phoenix New Times named us “Best Wine Shop” for 2017! So we would like to name our wine community “Hands Down the Best Customers in AZ” for 2017! It’s official… Congrats and raise a glass of your favorite vino!
Before we get to this month’s wines, we have a few exciting events this week to tell you about. Hope you can join us!
This Week’s Events
GUIDED TASTING, Wednesday, Oct 11, 6:00-8:00 PM: We have a few seats left for our guided tasting with Certified Somm Matt Lane. We will be running through exclusive wines from Torbreck Winery. Matt will share information on the terroir, varietals, estate, and philosophy of Torbreck. This tasting will also have a few Aussie inspired snacks to pair with the wine! Probably not Vegemite, though.
$40 per person or $35 per club member
$70 per couple or $60 per club member plus one
Reservation and hold with a credit card required. Cancellations within 24 hoursof the event will be charged for the full amount. Call 602.566.7932 or reply to this email to make a reservation.
ABBEY YOGA & WINE, Sunday, Oct 15, 4:30PM-7:30PM: Last month’s Abbey Yoga & Wine event was so fun, we’re doing it again! Availability is limited, and we sold out last month, so sign up quickly! Tickets and details available here.
And with that…
This Month’s Wine
We have been very excited about this month’s selections for a while now. It was one of those ideas for wine club that sounded amazing – what an incredible showcase of region and style – but we didn’t think it would be possible. The production on one of the selections is very small, which usually means that the winery would have a hard time supporting the volume. Alas, we got it! And this month’s selections play off last month’s. In September we showcased two variations of Malbec, showing you how diverse a varietal can be. We’re doing the same this month with a different varietal…
Let’s talk a little about an amazing region called Ribera del Duero in Spain. This region is located in the North Central part of Spain. Ribera del Duero became a recognized DO (Denominación de Origen) in 1982, but has a much longer history of wine culture. A recent unearthing of a mosaic of Bacchus, the Roman God of agriculture, wine, and fertility, stamps a mark on the wine timeline dating back 2000 years! The main varietals grown in this region are Tempranillo, Cabernet, Merlot, and Malbec. Tempranillo of course is King, and regionally is referred to as Tinto Fino or Tinta del Pais. There is only one white varietal that is allowed to be produced and recognized in the Ribera del Duero, and that varietal is Albillo. We love Albillo, which unfortunately is very difficult to find in the US. We’re working on it, though!
One can’t talk about Ribera del Duero without talking about the most important producer of the r
egion, Vega Sicilia. Vega Sicilia was founded in 1864 and embarked on a mission to produce one of the most respected wines globally. Vega Sicilia’s Unico Gran Reserva will turn any wine collector’s head and extend their glass for a sa
mple. Vega Sicilia was extremely influential in making Ribera del Duero a DO and giving
Rioja a run for its money as to the most prized wine region in Spain. In other words, if you come across a bottle of Vega Sicilia, please call us over for a glass. (We can order it, by the way, with the Unico running about $400/bottle…for non-wine club members, anyway!)
For October’s wines, we found a great little Bodega that has a wonderful history of its own
in Ribera del Duero. Bodegas Pradorey can be found on the north bank of the River Duero. The estate itself has a history that dates back to 1503 when Queen Isabella of Castile bought the land that includes Bodegas Pradorey for the purpose of farming and land acquisition. The winery today still generates power from a hydroelectric dam that was built on the Ribera del Duero in 1921. Pradorey has a commitment to terroir and uses its history of extensive wine agriculture to deliver varietals that showcase terroir… Coincidentally, when we visited Spain last year, we may have come across a bottle of Pardorey, which may have inspired us to pursue finding the wine in the US! Check out this pic of The Craig holding one of our prized finds in Madrid!
And October’s selections are…
Bodegas Pradorey Finca Valdelayegua Crianza
Predominately Tempranillo with less than five percent Cabernet and Merlot. This Crianza style sees 12 months in oak and three months in oak vats. It showcases a single vineyard site in the NW part of the estate called Valdelayegua. Ribera del Duero aging is as follows: Crianza = 2 years aging with minimum 12 months in oak; Riserva = 3 years of aging with minimum 12 months in oak; Gran Reserva = 5 years of aging with minimum 24 months in oak.
Bodegas Pradorey El Cuentista
This selection is 100% Tempranillo. But wait… It’s a white wine? Oh boy, this is RAD! This Tempranillo is produced using a “blanc de noir” method. This means that in production the winemaker presses the juice of a red varietal (Tempranillo, in this case) and ferments the juice without any skin contact. If there was skin contact for any extended amount of time, the pigment of the skin would give it the red color. After fermentation, this selection was aged in oak for nine months. And as Tempranillo is known as an aromatic wine, this version falls right in line with a great expression of aromatics on the nose and full body on the palate. Enjoy – just as we have on numerous occasions already.