This week something a little different from the SWE team. Instead of a specific region, this week Roque and Luke focus on a winery for their first bodega special. They talk about the wines of Casa Rojo, share a bottle of DO Jumilla and DO Rueda and speak to a member of the winery team. Salud!
One of the things that might attract the visitor’s attention most is that in Spain canned food has a consideration beyond subsistence food, military grub for dangerous missions or student flat food. It is a product of quality and luxury, whose price can sometimes reach striking figures. Enter a gourmet supermarket when you visit one of our provincial capitals and you will see what I mean. In Spain there is a long canning tradition. The variety is overwhelming: Santoña anchovies, foie gras, piquillo peppers, asparagus, bonito del norte, mussels and a long list of others.
The canning industry alone generates more than 250,000 tonnes of fish per year, some of which is exported – around 50%, and 80% of this is consumed in the European Union, where its quality is highly valued.
But where does this tradition come from? In addition to being a country with a great deal of fishing and farming activity, it dates back to the 18th century, when death by scurvy on ships that spent a long time sailing on the high seas had become a real problem. It was Frenchman Nicolas Appert, who observed that foods boiled at more than 80ºC, and not exposed to air, lasted longer without spoiling.
The food then began to be packed in airless containers, which were later sterilized at temperatures to eliminate bacteria and other microorganisms. The result: a longer-lasting, tastier and more nutritious foodstuff.
It was not until the 19th century that the production of packaged food would take place industrially, first in glass jars and later in the popular tin containers.
The result not only prevented the spread of certain diseases, but also brought enormous health benefits. Protein, fatty acids of marine origin and polyunsaturates, omega-3…
For many people eating canned food is not at all glamorous, but canned food can reach levels of excellence as high as any other meal prepared for hours. But welcome to Spain! Here the preserves have rightly been given their place in the most demanding and exquisite pantries, so they deserve to be treated and combined with an appropriate wine, which enhances all their virtues.
Fish preserves combine perfectly with young wines: don’t be afraid, open a tin of sardines and enjoy it with a garnacha, a monastrell, a mencía or a rosé. On the other hand, if you prefer tuna or any of its relatives (bonito, melva…) choose a white wine with body, maybe some barrel.
Don’t forget to try our seafood preserves: the delicious clams, razors and cockles from northern Spain. If the seafood is packed in natural packaging, they will be perfect with the wines of the area: Rías Baixas or Ribeiro. If they are packed with sauces or fried, try a sherry.
Do you like anchovies? You can’t imagine the pleasure of savoring them accompanied by a Txakolí.
Have you ever been told that asparagus and artichokes are the great enemies of wine? Nothing could be further from the truth. A Sauvignon Blanc will put the sulfuric flavors and aromas of these vegetables in their place. In my case, I love artichokes and it’s always been a headache to find them a good companion. Here you have it: Amontillado wine.
And finally, I don’t want to say goodbye without mentioning the foies. Although I’m not a fan of them they marry spectacularly well with Pedro Ximenez.
Don’t hesitate. On your next visit to Spain let yourself be carried away by the fascinating world of canning. You will be pleasantly surprised, as well as discovering a new and wonderful souvenir to take home, for you and your friends.
Today the SWE team return to the Canary Islands. Roque and Luke are joined by special guest traveller Debbie Musgrove. She’s been on holiday and brought the boys a bottle of wine – Famara – from Bodega Vega de Yuco in DO Lanzarote.
They talk wine innovation and volcanic parks and start longing for holidays!
This week sees Roque and Luke tackling one of the absolute stalwarts of Spanish white wines: DO Rueda. You order a white in Madrid, you get this. They opt for an interesting bottle of Nisia from Bodegas Jorge Ordoñez. They also quibble about sunlight and nonsensically muse about the usual wine based codswallop.
This week Roque and Luke head to Spain’s smallest DO; Monterrei, found nestled in the hot depths of Galicia on the border with Portugal. They enjoy a bottle of Terras do Cigarrón which is part of the Martín Codax family. They also chat ideal dinner guests as well as how to pair wine with junk food snacks.
This week sees Roque and Luke head back to the world of Pagos for a bottle called Pilas Bonas from DO Pago Casa del Blanco. They talk and play with wine gadgets and chat, among other topics, nonsense about wine mysteries. Salud!
This week sees Roque and Luke returning the lands of the north, the mountainous Basque Country and the wonderful world of spritzy Txacoli! But this time it’s DO Txakoli de Getaria, grown on the doorstep of San Sabastián. A glitzy and fun bottle from Txomin Etxaniz. Expect the usual nonsense and banter from everyone’s favourite drunken fools.
On this week’s podcast Roque and Luke sample an odd wine from the tough lands of Utiel-Requena. A blend called Catamarán by Latorre Agrovinícola. They also talk barrels and wine stains with the usual dose of nonsense and geekiness.
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Let’s fly back to Cataluña, now to discover the Catalunya DO. This week Roque and Luke share a bottle of Idoia Blanc from Ca N’Estruc bodega. And of course, stupidity, nonsense and mutual insultery.
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On this week’s podcast Roque and Luke enjoy the onset of spring with a cold bottle of Ánima de Raimat from the legendary Raimat bodega in DO Costers del Segre. As well as the classic onslaught of idiocy, they also natter about box wines and turn their drunken minds to the media.
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