Vino Camino – The Blending of Two Countries, Two Cultures & Two Grapes
I recently had the opportunity to chat with David Pagan Castano, Spanish born and bred winemaker now holding the reigns of the production at Potomac Point Winery outside of Fredricksburg, Virginia.
My love of Spanish wines had me interested in his latest project, Vino Camino, a blend of Monastrell grapes from his hometown of Yecla, Spain and Potomac Point’s Cabernet Franc.
Fortunately, David was able to share a little about the making of Vino Camino:
In Spain, there is a word reserved just for the harvest of grapes, vendimia. It is the time of year when the wineries smell of fermentation and yeast and enologists and their teams are working around the clock to create thousands of gallons of wine. This is just the first step.
Most of the wines we make during the crush, as the harvest is often called here, will be blended throughout the year. Blends can be the same grape fermented in different barrels or tanks, different varieties, or even different years, in what is known as non-vintage wine.
Recently, I blended wines from two different countries, Spain and the US. It is called Vino Camino, literally ‘wine path’ in Spanish. The grape variety I used from Yecla, Spain is called Monastrell, or Mourvèdre if you were harvesting this variety in France. This variety does very well in the Yecla region where my family has been making wine for three generations. It is often made into a varietal and offers licorice, ripe black fruits, and warm spices to the nose and palette.
I blended this wine with Potomac Point Winery’s Cabernet Franc. For three years working with this grape in Virginia, I have come to learn about its special ability to thrive here. This variety, often celebrated by the Commonwealth’s wine associations, presents ripe red berries and black pepper on the nose and balance to the mouth feel.
This past Sunday, September 28 a group of over 150 people came to learn about the blend and celebrate its release. You can read more about the story and the event at www.potomacpointwinery.com/blog.
The blend represents my roots from Spain and my home here in Virginia with my wife and son. When I met my wife, we shared a lot about each other’s culture and made a fusion family. It was inevitable to create a fusion wine. I am grateful for the support of Cindi and Skip Causey who supported the concept and helped it come to life, to Jeanne Eickhoff for designing the label, and for all those who contributed to helping this come to fruition.
As soon as I return to the States, my first priority is trying a bottle of Vino Camino.
Cheers / Salud and Congratulations David!