By Andy AcostaThe Wine Country’s Staff
Wine Notes by Ronnie Grant
I was having dinner with a friend the other evening and wanted to see if both a white and red wine could complement the same dish. That dish was chicken thighs prepared in a Spanish style with olive oil, garlic, onions, tomatoes, paprika, and green olives stuffed with pimentos.
Both wines were from Spain. The white is the Angel Rodriguez 2010 Martinsancho Verdejo from Rueda. The crisp acidity of the Verdejo worked well with the olive oil and fattiness of the dark meat while the minerality really sang with the olives.
D. Ventura’s 2010 Pena do Lobo from Ribeira Sacra is the red, and it’s a wine made from the Mencia grape. The smooth, bright fruit and body of the wine works very well with the tomatoes and it, too, has the acidity to deal with the chicken fat.
Both wines, very different from each other, performed beautifully, complementing different components of the same dish.
Angel Rodriguez 2010 Martinsancho Rueda
Angel Rodriguez saved the shy-bearing, thick-skinned Verdejo through loving refusal to uproot his 17th-century vineyard, Martinsancho. In 1976, Angel regrafted 25 acres of his best vineyard located in La Seca, using Martinsancho cuttings. It’s
almost like the wine is alive as the nose is very animated, jumping out of the glass and tickling your senses with intense aromas of citrus, minerals, and flowers in the background. The intensity builds in the mouth and lasts for quite some time as the finish is impressive.
$16.99 per bottle
Don Ventura 2010 Pena do Lobo, Ribeira Sacra
Located in Galicia, the home to Rias Baixas and Albarino, this wine from the region of Ribeira Sacra is made from the indigenous red varietal Mencia. For comparison sake this is very similar to a great Dolcetto from Piedmont or even Cabernet Franc from France. It’s really pretty on the nose with some spice, a little bit of flowers and plenty of vivid blue fruit. Texture wise is silky smooth with a bit of soft tannin on the finish.
$22.99 per bottle