Thursday I also met with one of my favorite wine people these days, Nola Palomar from Veleta Wines. Nola, who along with her husband, Juan (who is back in Spain), and daughter Nolita (who came along with her mom for the day), live and make wine in the Granada DO of Spain, yet also reside part of the year in my hometown of Dayton, OH.
Nola and her seriously high-energy daughter dropped in on a cold afternoon to revisit the Veleta wines, as well as get a glimpse of where it was that I landed shortly after our last visit.
The thing I really like about Veleta wines is that they actually need some time to age; they are like children, who need nurturing and mentoring to reach maturity. Many of these wines are quite youthful.
Veleta Brut Rosé Granada NV. Grade=Outstanding. A sparkling pink blend of Tempranillo and Garnacha, done in the traditional Champagne method, this vibrant sparkler gives you pretty strawberries and dragonfruit with touches of mineral, white tea and sourdough brioche.
Veleta Vijiriega Granada 2011. Grade=Very Good. This ancient grape of Vijiriega, or “viji” for short, is blended with 10% Chardonnay for a racy, minerally white wine that is eerily reminiscent of the white wines of Lebanon with its chalky limestone undertones and demonstrative elements of lime rind, almond paste, green apple and chayote. Very nerdy but extremely good.
Veleta Tempranillo Rosado Granada 2011. Grade=Outstanding+. A saigneé of Tempranillo, there is a lot of ripe cherry and strawberry splashing around in this reservoir of white spice and red plums. Finishes airy and dry.
Veleta Tempranillo Joven Granada 2010. Grade=Outstanding. Though it smells strongly of oak, there is very little used here. Its dried cherries and red currants mix well with light spices, dried herbs and rosewood notes.
Sierra Sol Tempranillo Granada NV. Grade=Very Good. This non-vintage Tempranillo sees more oak than the Joven, and it plays a more lush and creamy counterpart to its young, vintage sibling. Chocolate-covered cherries and a touch of amaretto cream finish out this terrific value.
Veleta Tempranillo Granada 2006. Grade=Outstanding. Fleshing out nicely, this medium-bodied red displays red and black cherry fruits, touches of red licorice, crushed red flowers, cloves, thyme, cedar char and tobacco notes. It’s a very pretty, intricate wine.
Veleta Tempranillo Granada 2007. Grade=Very Good. A bit more closed off, this tightly-wound, medium-bodied red is like a laser beam of red fruit, thinly-veiled spice and oak elements, and highly-effusive acidity.
Veleta Nolados Granada 2008. Grade=Outstanding+. This incredible blend Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc and Tempranillo is full-bodied, with a lot of blue and red fruit, spice box, leather and tobacco notes, with a hint of mole, cigar and hickory smoke. Firm tannins shine continually.
Veleta Cabernet Sauvignon Granada 2008. Grade=Outstanding. This is fairly closed off as well, with particularly tight red and black fruit characteristics and muted hints of dark spices, oak and cocoa. Needs a few years to reveal its true nature.