2018 Can Sumoi Xarelo-lo, Penedés, Spain (Alcohol 11.5%, Residual Sugar 1g/l) LCBO Vintages $27.95 (750ml bottle)
This gorgeously crisp, mineral-hyperdriven white comes from the historied Can Sumoi property, an estate with winemaking origins dating back to 1645. Recently purchased by Raventós i Blanc, these 20 hectares of vines are planted to Parellada, Xarel-lo, and Sumoll, but in this case the Xarelo-lo takes a break from the usual Cava band and releases a solo project, one that embraces its more “natural” leanings.
It’s a mouthwatering wine with a taut salt/steel grip that will find many fans with winelovers whose palates are usually drawn towards more austere examples of Chablis, Albariño, Assyrtiko, top-tier Muscadet and the like. One will find a whole load of zesty apple and tangerine on the nose, with a fair bit of autolytic funk that contributes without dominating. There’s a delightfully intense cracked-stone core on the palate that lifts this wine up by another half apple.
Most enjoyable, and well worth a try if you enjoy that oxidative, minerally juice that’s apparently all the rage these days.
I tried this alongside simple grilled/charred octopus (preferably over a wood fire, but a raging barbecue will certainly work in a pinch) with just a splash/dash of lemon/salt. A match made in… Catalonia.
(Four and a half apples out of possible five)
Edinburgh-born/Toronto-based Sommelier, consultant, writer, judge, and educator Jamie Drummond is the Director of Programs/Editor of Good Food Revolution… And that really was thrilling with the octopus.