##To say 2020 has been unusual in the wine community would be an understatement. With barely a decent tasting to be had since the end of March, Proava are to be congratulated on keeping the competitions going on the Government’s behalf! This year has seen the introduction of a new competition for wine with Certification of Ecological (Organic) status. This was open to bodegas who have the back label issued by the CAECV… whose headquarters are in Carlet. The competition alternates with that for the Monovarietales and this year was held together with the Sparkling wines and Cava competition.
The tasting panel is drawn from professionals in a variety of related employment, Winemakers, Representatives of the DO’s, Sumillers, Wine writers such as VÍ Vid and the Valencian press and representatives of the Generalitat and in particular the Agriculture, Rural development and Climate transition under its ‘Molt de Gust’ banner.
The panel taste the entries “blind” in several different categories after which medals are awarded to the best wines. Two panels of six, under very strict Covid-19 protocols, met over three days with a total of 99 wines from 27 bodegas!
One bodega stood out when the results were announced on 17 December, Sierra Norte, who cleaned up with 6 medals including the best wine in the community.
Sierra Norte took the Grand Prize for Ecological wines for Bercial Blanco Seleccíon, Gold in the young whites with Pasión de Moscatel, Silver for its Mariluna… a blend of Verdejo/Macabeo, Gold for its Pasión de Bobal Rosado, and in Reds with short ageing in wood (6 months) Gold for Bobal Pasión for its 2018 vintage and Silver for Bercial Laderas los Cantos 2016 a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Bobal with 18 months oak ageing.
The remaining medals were shared between 8 other bodegas.
Bocopa, from Novelda in Alicante province took two Bronze medals for their Castillo de Alicante Rosado (Tempranillo/Merlot) and Young red Castillo de Alicante (Tempranillo/Cabernet Sauvignon/Merlot.)
Ontinium (Ontinyent-DO Valencia) took a bronze for Begam, a young white with Macabeo and Moscatel.
Cataruz (DO Valencia) took the Gold for whites with fermentation in oak for their Extremo, (Viognier/Verdejo).
Los Pinos, (DO Valencia-Fontanares) took Silver for Brote, a white with Verdil and Viognier.
Vinos y Sabores Ecológicos gained Silver for their Rosado Cru Safont, a blend of Bobal with Garnacha.
Las Virtudes, the Villena based (DO Alicante) coop grabbed a silver Lavirtu Eco which is a pure Monastrell.
The last medal (Bronze in aged reds ) went to Bodegas Arraez for Juajo Tinto which is a pure Alicante Bouschet.
In the Competition for Sparkling Wines there are again several categories. For those made by the Ancestral Method, there was a draw for three Bronzes with no wine gaining a Gold or Silver. These went to Vegamar DO Valencia-Calles for Ancestral Rosado and Xaló (DO Alicante) for its Bahía Brut Nature (Moscatel) and its Rosado (Garnacha) both from 2018.
In the category for Granvas, Gold went to Reymos for their L´Encert Brut… a blend of Malvasia and Merseguera. Silver went to Bocopa for Marina Alta Espumante from Moscatel and Reymos won the Bronze for Moscatel Reymos Sellcción.
Bodegas Francisco Gomez (DO Alicante) took Silver and Bronze for Queen of Kings Blanc Brut Nature and Queen of Kings Blanc de Noir Brut. No Gold was awarded in this category.
For Vinos de Aguja (Spritz style wines) Murviedro took Silver and Bronze for Estrella Frizzante Moscatel and Estrella Frizzante Rosé. The Bodega is in Requena, the wines are DO Valencia.
Prizes for wines with injected gas went to Gandia (Bronzes) for Barón de Valls Ice Blanco and Sandara(Chardonnay and Sake).
Turning to the Cavas, four bodegas shared the prizes. Gold went to Murviedro for Arts de Luna, Silver to Gandia for Hoya de Cadenas Brut Nature. There was no Bronze in this category. For Brut, UVÉ took gold for Nit de Foc, Murviedro Silver for Arts de Luna Brut and Coviñas took the Bronze for Enterizo Brut.
In the Category for Reserva, Cava Arraez and Vegamar shared a Silver for Cava Sutra and Privée 10BN respectively. Coviñas got the Bronze for Aula Reserva, Vega Medien for UVÉ took the sole medal in the Rosado category.
In the category for Cava, which also had Ecological status, Murviedro took Gold and Silver for Arts de Luna Rosado and the Macabeo/Chardonnay.
Gandia took the Bronze for El Miracle Brut Organic and the Grand Prize for best wine for Hoya de Cadenas Brut Organic.
Congratulations to all the participating bodegas and especially to the winners!
All of these wines are available in the Valencian Community and should you find some of them for the winter season. We think you will not be disappointed with your choices!
Whichever wines you choose we wish all our readers the very best for 2021, stay safe and healthy and we hope that before long we will be able to resume our tasting activities.
By Riki Wigley & Marian Darás
VÍ Vid is a project supporting the development of wine knowledge and gastronomy in the Valencian Community. We run wine clubs, give tastings of Valencian wines in English and support wine-makers and bodegas directly. We can be found in Instagram (Vivid8402), and through our blog VÍ Vid at https://vvidblog.wordpress.com, in Facebook, (https://www.facebook.comVivideventos) and in Twitter @vividvinos.