The Evodia Garnacha 2018 is sourced from 40 to 100-year-old vines in vineyards located in the foothill of the Sierra Santa Cruz Mountains in the Calatayud region in northeast Spain. This is a wine that sells for around $10 and is a perennial 90+ point wine. It has been a bang-for-the-buck favorite for years.
Here is a cheap wine tip: when buying imported wine, follow the importer. The Evodia Garnacha 2018 is one of Eric Solomon Selections/European Cellars’ family of wines, but there are many top-quality importers. If you find an imported wine that speaks to you, note the importer on the back label.
Next time you are looking for wine at your favorite wine shop, ask the clerk if they have any other wines in the general price range by that importer. The clerk will know exactly what you are talking about and may even offer wines from other importers that are similarly suited to your tastes. Following the importer is a shortcut to finding great wines.
Garnacha from this general area in Spain routinely receives high scores from leading reviewers and is almost always value-priced. This is not a region with fancy wine estates with chateaus and grand buildings. It is a rural, modest region that produces drink-it-now wines as opposed to wines for collectors and restaurant wine lists.
Here is another cheap wine tip: if you want the best quality inexpensive Red wine, drink Garnacha/Grenache. Garnacha does not need oak barrel aging to taste “correct.” A Cabernet Sauvignon or Pinot Noir without oak can taste like something is missing..”
Garnacha is a sleek, dark, intense wine (and in this region, be juicy and fruit-forward); it can take oak but does not need oak for extra flavor and structure. Oak barrels can be $1,000 each, and that can add up in a hurray. Less expensive wine procedures will lead to less expensive wine.
The Evodia Garnacha 2018 used interesting fermentation and aging techniques. 80% of the wine was fermented in concrete vats then transferred to used, neutral oak barrels for aging. The other 20% was fermented and aged in concrete egg-shaped enclosures.
Concrete may seem like an unlikely substance for wine, but it is lined to prevent the concrete from bleeding into the wine. The concrete is thick enough to keep the temps and the humidity inside constant, and wine loves a steady climate. The shape of the concrete egg keeps the “lees” (dead, spent yeast, and grape residue) in contact with the wine, providing additional flavor and texture.
The Evodia Garnacha 2018 may be value-priced, but the packaging is first-rate. The label is modern and attractive. The bottle is heavy, and there is a deep punt in the bottom. The indentation in the bottom gives the glass bottle extra strength, and heavily reinforced bottles are found on Bordeaux and expensive Napa wine. The use of the high-end bottle for a $10 wine is the importer sending a message. The alcohol content is 14.5%.
Evodia Garnacha 2018 Tasting Notes
The color is a see-thru cranberry red with black highlights. The nose is ripe berries, blackberry, and blueberry, licorice, and rich spice. The Evodia Garnacha 2018 is an intense wine that fully engages the palate.
It tastes of ripe, rich, extracted blackberry, soft black pepper, licorice, and a slap of exotic spice. The mid-palate adds orange zest, strawberry, sharp, jagged spice, and ripe plum. This is a wine with thick, chewy flavors and plenty of structure.
- The Evodia Garnacha 2018 tastes like a more expensive wine than its selling price because it is.
- If they could get people to pay $35 for Calatayud Garnacha, this wouldn’t be $10.
- As I said, a cheap wine tip is, “Drink Garnacha.”
- The vineyard location may be modest, but the European Cellars winemaking and vineyard team is top-notch.
- A good winemaking team makes good wine. Wine can be complicated, but sometimes it is that simple.