The Tasting Panel magazine

August 2012

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Page 98 of 128

La Mancha on the March THE SPANISH D.O. EDUCATES AND ENTERTAINS IN SAN FRANCISCO story and photos by Deborah Parker Wong F or a seminar showcasing the superb 2011 vintage from D.O. La Mancha at Terra Gallery in San Francisco, celebrity wine consultant Michael Green broke the mold with his choice of a lively talk show-format, one that both entertained and educated. Green extolled both the food and wine culture of the D.O. while he cajoled the audience to respond in unison with answers and applause as he chatted with seven producers whose wines were presented during the seated portion of the tasting. While both the wines and his overall message emphasized the quality for value that can be found in La Mancha, Green's references to cultural icons such as filmmaker Pedro Almodóvar and soccer star Andres Nieto served as a reminder that many consumers have already forged an emotional connection to the region. Wines from four of La Mancha's five sub regions—Albacete, Cuidad Real, Cuenca and Toledo (with the exception of Guadalajara)—were offered during the afternoon tasting with an emphasis on fresh whites from indigenous varieties like Airén, Verdejo and Macebeo as well as Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay. Mono-varietal wines crafted from Tempranillo and Syrah may be the region's hallmarks but winemakers have clearly been honing their efforts at producing Tempranillo-dominate blends that are achieving a new level of complexity and style for the region. La Mancha D.O. President Gregorio Martín-Zarco and wine celebrity Michael Green toast the 2011 vintage. 98 / the tasting panel / august 2012

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