Golden Boy Carlos Ruben also wins triple gold at Grenaches du Monde!
There is simply no stopping Carlos Ruben’s “La Voz de la Garnacha” project. After several gold medals at Mundus Vini and Concours Mondial, multiple 90+ ratings at Penin and Jancis Robinson’s laudatory comments, Ruben has also scooped up three gold medals at the prestigious Grenaches du Monde. This competition is the most coveted among Grenache/Garnacha producers because it is a worldwide battle of winemakers, all of whom have to compete with the same beloved grape variety. The 250-member jury consists of Grenache aficionados, predominantly winemakers, but also sommeliers, trade press and recognised fans of the grape variety.
Carlos Ruben won the gold medal with Sin Duda 2017 (“without a doubt”), which is exactly what the “Grenache” jury must have thought when they stuck their noses in the glass. Sin Duda is a DO Calatayud wine, a real Garnacha appellation that, in terms of soil structure, can best be situated as a blend between Châteauneuf-du-pape and Priorat. Aided by the winds of the Ebro Valley, this upper region produces wines with an unseen freshness. El Clasico 2018 also scooped up gold. A blend created in honour of the Spanish pinnacle of rivalries in just about every sport and, unfortunately, in politics as well. A clash of muscle and elegance, fully expressed in the glass, this wine is a blend of grapes from the Catalan DO Montsant and DO Madrid. But the absolute highlight in terms of pride for Raices Ibericas, this crisp four-year-old company is undoubtedly the gold medal for Bassin “Brut Salvaje” 2019. It’s the first mousseux ever that consists of 100% Grenache grapes. An ode to the Bassin Méditerranéen, the birthplace of both the white and red Garnacha varieties. What makes this cuvée special is that it is an un-dosed “brut nature” blend between Grenache from an old plot of rolled pebbles near Béziers and a higher plot of Garnacha in the Catalan Terra Alta. The wine is aged for a few months on the fine lees, then re-fermented for 4-5 weeks and bottled immediately afterwards.
The Carlos Ruben “La Voz de la Garnacha” project was created by Mark Schiettekat (Le Wine) and dedicated to his long-time friend and winemaker Carlos Ruben Magallanes. Ruben, as he is called by his mother and friends, has been vinifying Garnacha in Calatayud like no other since 1997. Mark discovered the region in 1996. While travelling in South Africa in 2015, the idea to set up a project together involving a Garnacha trail was conceived. The project now comprises 12 wines, most of which are blends between different regions and even countries, each time seeking the most fascinating expression of the grape variety. “Ton sur ton” vinification that captures all the facets of this exceptional grape variety, and the project now also has overseas perspectives. There’s more to come….