Candea is Muradella’s new entry level label, for want of a better phrase. Future vintages (for both a red and a white) will be sourced from the Monterrei vineyards of a great friend of Jos? Luis Mateo, Juan Jose Vilela. The Vilela family was once one of the region’s largest farmers of old vines, and played a significant part in Mateo’s emergence as one of Spain’s most exciting wine growers. More on this story with the release of the 2015. Jos? Luis Mateo released only a single red cuvee from a very difficult 2014 vintage (just two whites were also made in tiny quantities) – and this is it. To cut a long story short, Mateo – a late harvester – got caught out by a period of awful weather (and including a devastating thunderstorm) late in the season while his fruit was still on the vine. With his vines spread over a very large, disparate collection of terroirs, Mateo was only able to save a small proportion of his fruit. Following a difficult elevage, he then made the decision to declassify all of his terroir cuvees into a single wine. Believing the individual wines were not up to their usual standard, Mateo felt this was the right thing to do by his terroir and his clients. The name Candea translates as ‘honesty’. So this 2014 is a blend of all wines that we would usually see spread across Mateo’s coterie of bottlings (Alanda, Gorvia, Berrande and single terroir/varietal cuvees etc.); a blend of Menc?a, Garnacha Tintorera, Bastardo, Menc?a, Mourat?n, Ca??o Tinto, Arauxa (Tempranillo), Sous?n and Albarello raised with varying proportion of whole bunches and whole berries and in myriad vessels, from cement to old oak barrels – we don’t know the exact details, and probably neither does Jose! In short, it’s a fabulous, everyday drinking Muradella. What’s good for the goose…
Jose Luis Mateo Monterrei Candea Blanco 2015 750 ML
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There is a darker fruit spectrum evident in the reserve, with notes of coffee, smoke, black fruits, a touch of charred wood all worked through, and without damping the core fruit flavors. Those bright flavors spotlight raspberry, plum and black cherry. A light cola flavor pokes through, with ripe tannins and proportionate acids. The barrel treatment is beautifully applied, adding sweet spice to the finish.