Spanish wines captivate audience in Kuopio

Normal Sunday evening in Kuopio, Central of Finland, but on the air there were some restlessness. Soon good things came to winepeople who waited Joan Cusine, to start the wine meeting. Spanish winemaker Joan Cusine from Penedes travels around the world to speak about Pares Balta’s wines and their biodynamic background. Too often winemakers visit just metropolitan areas and do not have time and opportunity to visit elsewhere to promote wine culture. With Joan Cusine, one of the owners of Pares Balta winery, situation is different. Joan, man of the wine world, travels over 200 days in year, to taste and tell people about wines from Katalonia and Pares Balta. Joan has been a few times in Kuopio area, getting acquainted with local people and ways of life, as well as local dishes, telling and tasting wines to competent and enthusiastic winepeople.

So platform was ready for maestro of wines to start the unforgettable tasting evening!
Tasting took place in Kuopio Adult Education Center, Kallavesi-hall, perfect place for happening.

To start Joan provided some background information about viticulture and vinification of Pares Balta wines.

Parés Baltà is a family owned traditional winery that goes back to 1790. They are winemakers with a long tradition but with new and fresh ideas. The company is guided into a new era of high quality wine production under the management of Joan and Josep Cusiné and the inconditional help of their father Joan Cusiné Cusiné. Mª Elena Jiménez and Marta Casas, wives of Cusiné brothers, are true winemakers who are behind Pares Balta’s unforgettable, memorable wines.

White wines were first to be tasted. Starting with Blanca Cusine Cava, continuing with Espigol and Electio, ending up with Materia Prima Orange wine!

Red wines revealed the quality and versatility of Pares Balta wines, also geographically. Starting with Hisenda Miret, Dominio Romano from Ribera del Duero, GV5 from Priorato and unique Absis coronating the evening.


As a tidpits on the table there were Crustad with Lapinlumous by KalaLappi, Kuusenkerkkä-Cheddar
by Jukolan Juusto, Fallero (beetroot), Smoked meet, Vintage-Cheddar by Jukolan Juusto.

Joan Cusine gave many unforgettable wine experiencies for winepeople attending his winetasting. On the other hand Joan got something to remember when returning back to home. Having late supper after long day and the tasting Joan was gladly surprised when he was served Parés Balta ’b’ Organic Cava Brut as a starter. During the menu Joan also recollected the incident when he was first time in Juankoski on ice catching fish under the ice! He remembered to ask ”Is the ice thich enough to carry man” when standing on the 60 cm thick ice! Altogether Joan catched totally six pike-pearch on that unforgettable fish session! Not bad!

All in all. Is there better way on peaceful Sunday evening, than to come together with winefriends to taste and familiarize quality wines from Katalonia lead by Joan Cusine, maestro of Katalonian wines! Ergo.

Glass of wines:
Blanca Cusiné Cava 2014. Xarel-lo, Chardonnay, Pinot Noir. Golden yellow, dried fruits, toasted notes and good acidity, traditional method, minimum ageing period 80 months.

Espigol 2022. Malvasia de Sitges. Pale yellow, grapey and herbal aromas, dry, rounded and intense in the mouth, fermentation in stainless-steel tank, unoaked.

Electio 2021. Xarel-lo. Pale gold, spicy, oaky on the nose, dry, creamy, youthful oak, minerally, nutty notes, fermented in French and Hungarian oak. Grapes from more than 90-year-old bush vines

Materia Prima Orange 2022.
Xarel-lo. Gewürztraminer. Orange, aromas of flowers and fruits, structures, tannic, fermented with wild yeast in stainless steel tank, skin contact one month.

Hisenda Miret 2020. Grenache. Deep crimsom, aromas of oak spice, dark, red fruit, full-bodied, nuanced, fermentation in stainless-steel and ageing 5 monts in new and 2 year old French oak.

Dominio Romano 2016. Ribera del Duero. Tinto Fino. Dark garnet, red fruits, fragrant, full-bodied, smoky, total maceration 23 days, ageing 80% in French oak one year and 20% 9 months in 400-liter clay amphora.

GV5 2019. Priorat. Carinyena, Garnatxa. Deep ruby, black fruit jams and toasty, full-bodied, powerful, concentraded, licorice, long, pre-cold maceration and 14 months in new French and Hungarian barrels.

Absis 2018. Tempranillo, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Syrah. Purple with cherry rim, complex, notes of raisins, plums, red fruits, full-bodied, concentrated, integrated oak, balsamic notes, grapes hand-harvested and varieties separately macerated and fermented ageing 18 monts in oak. Wine made to last long time.

Text and photos. Heikki Remes

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