The Lagranja 360 Verdejo Viura 2018 is a $4.99 Trader Joe’s import exclusive sourced from vineyards in the Castilla y Leon region of northeast Spain. The Verdejo grape is indigenous to Spain and widely planted and the Viura grape is also known as Macabeo which is one of the 3 grapes traditionally used to make Cava. Trader Joe’s carries a whole line of Lagranja 360 wines which are very representative of the types of wine that average Spaniards drink every day.
The Castilla y Leon region wraps around the northeast corner of Portugal but does not extend to the Ocean either north or west. The wines of this region are Vino de la Tierra wines which are one step below the DO wines and are roughly the same as IGP wines of Italy and France. The grapes come local communes.
A commune is a group of small farmers who band together to pool their resources and produce wine on a scale much larger than they could provide individually. Lagranja 360 seems to have tapped into these communes in different regions of Spain to produce their wines. In the ranking order of wine, a commune is seen as a step or two below wineries with their own estate vineyards. But when dealing with value-priced wine a commune is a great way to get a good wine at a good price.
This is the type of wine that folks in Spain who drink wine with lunch and dinner drink. The crazy thing about this Trader Joe’s import wine is that it is sold in the US for about the same price it would be in Spain. The majority of people who use wine for their daily meal never spend more than ten bucks for a wine. Wines selling for a few Euros routinely are paired with the meal.
One thing you need to remember with wines that are produced particularly for food consumption is that they are designed to reach their balance when sipped with food, they may seem a little too acidic when sipping alone. The Lagranja 360 is produced for export so concessions are made for how Americans drink wine. It will probably be a little more fruit-forward than its Spanish equivalent to better appeal to the American palate.
This White wine is Vegan-friendly and uses natural yeast for fermentation. Natural yeast is the yeast that floats in the air and is naturally attached to the grapes’ skins. It is thought these yeasts are better suited for the grapes, though I doubt if most people could tell the difference between natural yeast and commercial yeast. Then again natural is usually the way to go when possible. The alcohol content is a mild 12.5%.
The Verdejo Viura Tasting Notes
The color is barely there, just a little pale wheat yellow. The nose is ripe and fresh, sort of reminds me of California Chardonnay, there is apple, peach, apricots, pears, lemon, lime, and orange blossom honey. This is a flavorful, crisp wine with just a hint of sweetness (nectar sweet, not sugar sweet). It tastes of grapefruit, peach, green apple, soft spice, and dried apricot. The mid-palate offers lime, the tasting notes mentioned banana and I don’t know if it the power of suggestion, but I tasted banana cream. The acidity is solid, this $4.99 wine will make a very good food wine. The finish is strong and sticks around.
- Four ninety-nine never tasted so good.
- In a blind tasting with regular ten bucks White wines you would never pick out the Lagranja 360 as the five buck wine.
- Cheap and delicious is a very good thing.