I’m always on the lookout for organic white wines. So I was delighted to taste (and take home) the Las Dos Ces Blanco from Spain’s Chozas Carrascal winery. I picked up the bottle at my local wine shop, Grapepoint Wines, for $15. Go to wine tastings at your neighborhood place; it’s a great opportunity to discover new things. (And buy a dang bottle!)
The first thing that caught my attention? This wine was from a region I’d never heard of before: Utel-Requena*. It’s west of Valencia by about 50 miles, taking its name from two neighboring towns. Further label perusal reveals the wine is made from organic grapes. Alright!
Chozas Carrascal Las Dos Ces Blanco 2018
This Spanish white wine is a blend of 80% Macabeo and 20% Sauvignon Blanc. You might know the former grape as Viura from such wines as white Rioja, as well as it’s important role in Cava. While I am a huge fan of pungent, zesty Sauvignon Blanc (like New Zealand’s iconic bottlings), I also like Sauv Blanc as more of a “seasoning” grape. If SB is at times too aggro for your liking, a nice splash of it (like the 20% in the Chozas Carrascal) add some lively flavor and interest.
What else is cool about this wine? It’s no boozy monster. At 12% alcohol it makes for a perfect afternoon wine, excellent with seafood and whatever refreshing situation arises.
Chozas Carrascal’s vineyards are at an elevation ranging from about 2,400 to 2,700 feet. I always like high elevation vines, because they look cool and enjoy cool nights. Those lower temperatures mean more chill grapes that retain that crisp freshness instead of getting it baked out of them.
And now you can chill out with a bottle.
*I should mention Bodegas Chozas Carrascal is a Vino de Pago estate, a fairly new (2003) Spanish wine designation. This is actually something I didn’t know about. Folks, I don’t know a lot of things.
Wine-Searcher does a good job of explaining what it means: rewarding wineries for doing cool things with atypical grapes and/or vineyards falling outside of its demarcated region and/or its rules. So you’ll see the top wines labeled “Vino de Pago” rather than Utel-Requena.