The Neophyte Report: How I Discovered Spanish Wine

Posted November 12, 2014

Terry Southard


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When thinking of wine, certain regions come to mind automatically, especially for the newbie like myself - Napa, Burgundy, Piedmont, the list goes on. One country that never seemed to come up when it came time to buy a bottle, however, was Spain.

This seems strange, considering that Spain has more land planted with grapes than any other nation in the world and has a history of winemaking to match any other European nation. Somehow it just never hit my radar like countries such as Italy or France.

That all changed when I was pointed towards the 2010 Can Rafols Dels Caus Terraprima Red. It totally opened my eyes to a new world of wine, and an amazing journey ensued.

The first thing to jump out at me was the breakdown. Consisting of 55% Cabernet Franc, 30% Grenache and 15% Syrah, this blend is truly out there. Despite that, these varieties come together to bring a weirdly satisfying mix of fruit, pepper, and vegetal notes to the party.

The Terraprima is really pleasant on the nose and doesn't kick you in the face like some more aggressive, higher-alcohol wines. For this tasting, I decided to take a friend’s advice and let the wine breathe for 15 minutes before going in for a second taste. Now again, as a newbie, I thought “What could possibly improve in 15 minutes?” Turns out, the answer is “a lot.”

After the wait, the dark fruit became more intense and vibrant, and the finish was long lasting. The flavors jumped out, taking the wine from “not bad” to “pour me another glass.” Of course, being a fan of anything spicy and peppery, this was the perfect wine for me. However, it is not overpowering, so no need to worry if you aren't a fan.

And the kicker? This is a steal at only $11.55. As an every-day drinker, this wine absolutely excels. You could grab a case right now, be covered for the holidays, and not even push a hundred and fifty bones.

Napa, Burgundy, Italia…yes, they are the big boys of wine, but never let that dissuade you from visiting another region to take part in a wonderful wine experience. Viva España!


Terry Southard works in Wine Library's order department, and has spent close to 30 years in the customer service and retail fields. When not enjoying great wine or food, he stays active in his local church. He is also an avid hiker, voracious reader of anything on the American Revolution, and a diehard follower of the Fab Four.


Item: 84210

750 mL

Retail: $21.99

$12.60 per btl