Fine Wine for ≤ $9.99 – Borsao Garnacha

On my previous trip to Wine House, I failed to realize that I was walking out with three Spanish Grenaches.  I would like to attribute this minor oversight to my being overwhelmed by the sheer size of the selection of this fine West Side establishment, but it could just as easily be chalked up to my being an idiot.  Though I prefer variety, I figure I should make the best of this happy accident and teach myself a thing or two about Spanish Grenache and compare the three.  The first, Evodia, is reviewed here.

Borsao Garnacha - 2010 Borja, Spain

Evodia set the bar pretty high, so I was prepared to be let down by this bottle.  The bouquet was much less intense, but equally pleasant with a nice combination of pepper, cherries and chocolate easily discernible to novice noses.  It also doesn’t look as heavy in the glass as the previous Grenache.  Putting those two together, I assumed it would pack half the punch in my mouth.  Happily, I was wrong.

As I’ve said before, I enjoy drinking wine by itself.  Borsao Garnacha is perfect for this.  It’s very easy to drink, delightfully light yet flavorful.  Nice, wet, and unassuming, this is exactly what I imagine when I think of a typical Spanish table wine.  I’m sure it would be right at home with an assortment of tapas, but, more importantly to me, it is excellent on its own.  At $6.99, it is a very practical bottle to have on hand.

One of the most common problems I have with drinking red wines by themselves is that many of them are too solemn.  For a red wine, Boraso is crisp and cheery.  I smiled every time I had a drink and even found myself going “ahhhh” when I finished off a glass.  I would certainly recommend it to red wine neophytes  as it’s such an easy and pleasant wine to drink.  Full of flavor, but not overpowering.  I would also recommend having one or two on hand for when you want a nice glass of wine by yourself or for when you have a friend pop over.  I know I’ll be picking up another.  4/5 stars.  Won’t knock you out, but it is very good.

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4 Comments

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4 responses to “Fine Wine for ≤ $9.99 – Borsao Garnacha

  1. I picked up a bottle of that wine a few months ago, but I’ve had it in the rack since then. I need to pull it out and give it a try. I just looked at my bottle and the label looked different. Then I realized that I have the 2009, which is called Tres Picos, but is still a garnacha by Borsao.

    You might see if you can find an old vine garnacha called “Atteca”. It is another one that I have in the rack, but I still haven’t tried, so I can’t say for myself, but the guy at the wine store highly recommended it and said that it was one of the most popular repeat-buys among his customers. It looks to be slightly over your $9.99 mark, but might still be worth a try. The bottle I have is from 2009. I found a merchant who carries it so that you can take a look:
    http://www.englewoodwinemerchants.com/product_details_wine.asp?ProductID=834

  2. I went back to Wine House today to pick up a few new bottles and grab another Borsao and noticed the Tres Picos on display next to it. It was $14.99, so it falls outside my jurisdiction. I’m skeptical as to whether twice the price would mean twice as nice in this case, because for $6.99, I think it’s a swell deal. In fact, I’m drinking the final Grenache I picked up a few weeks back right now. It was also $6.99, but it’s not at all in the same league.

    I might wait a bit before I pick up another Spanish Grenache. I went out of my way today to get two whites and two reds each from Italy and France. Going to Wine House is almost like going to Amoeba used to be. I spent an hour there today wandering around. They have a room where you can taste wines, but I haven’t done that yet because I have to drive and, like a good girl, I don’t like to spit.

  3. Since you wrote the review, the Borsao garnacha has been my “go to” Spanish wine…. Sadly, every place that used to carry it now only carries the Borsao “Tres Picos” garnacha…. Which really is an amazingly top-notch wine for the price of of $14.99, but I agree with you that an everyday wine should be no more than ten dollars.

    • You may want to try World Market. A recent trip there yielded both the Borsao and the Evodia for $6.99 and $8.99. I took the Evodia to a friend’s house and we opened it just in time for desert, which was triamisu. It was one of the most delicious pairings imaginable. I’d highly recommend it.

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