The Castano Monastrell Rose’ 2017 is sourced from vineyards in the higher elevations of the Yecla D.O., Yecla is a town located in the Murcia district of southeastern Spain, they have produced wine here since Roman times. Monastrell is a grape that is native to the region, but is best known as Mourvedre (the M in the GSM blends of the Rhone Valley). You will also see it under the name Mataro in wines from Australia. Monastrell is often used as a blending grape since its strong tannins (tannins are a chemical compound found in grape skins) and rich flavor can add structure and interest to a Red wine blend. But this is a Rose’ made with the Direct Press Method, meaning when the grapes were pressed the resulting juice went directly into the fermentation tanks and were kept away from the grape skins. The result is no grape skins equals no tannins, so if you are familiar with regular Monastrell/Mourvedre Red wine, the Rose’ version will be a very different wine. Castano is brand brought in by big-time importer Eric Solomon and his company European Cellars. This is a sub-$10 wine (I found it on sale for $6.99), but this wine does not present itself as an inexpensive bottle, the bottle has good weight to it and the label is both die-cut and embossed. These large importers have the financial backing to be able to import wine in large enough volume to keep the costs very competitive and also get the wines distributed to a large portion of the US. Another point to consider when gong to purchase wines from France, Italy and Spain, that these large importers tend to have a “house style“, meaning if you like one wine there is a very good chance that you will also enjoy other wines in their portfolio. This Rose’ has an alcohol content of 13%.
The color is on the peach or amber side of pink. The nose is lightly floral, along with notes of cherry, strawberry, peach, and a little hint of melon. This is a dry, bright, crisp, but not too acidic Rose’. It starts with tart, slightly sour strawberry mixed with ripe cherry, a really interesting undercurrent of minerals, and peaches and cream. All these flavors a subtle and balanced. The mid-palate adds some salty cashew, plum and a late slap of soft spices. All these flavors are delicate and subdued, but they add up to something very tasty.
The Castano Monastrell Rose’ 2017 is an excellent Rose’ at a very reasonable price. Drink it with a bit of a chill, but not too cold, the cold can mask the flavors and ruin you enjoyment of the wine. I would recommend giving this Rose’ a try this summer.