Albert Pasanau continues to fashion an exceptional, bold, Old World wine from Finca La Planeta, his most illustrious vineyard. The 2015 Pasanau Finca La Planeta (92 Points – Vinous) is as dark as midnight and as deep as the sea, but that should come as no surprise to anyone who has ever tasted Albert Pasanau’s prized Priorat. Blessed with a heady aroma redolent with the scents of black cherry, fig, and plum, this blend of 75% Cabernet Sauvignon and 25% Grenache begins with a bang. In the mouth, the wine reveals its concentration and power with a judicious blend of juicy black fruits, olives, and crushed stones, all building to a long, dry finish that kept our palates refreshed and begging for more. Make no mistake, there is no wimp in this wine; Albert Pasanau’s bold, beautiful 2015 Finca La Planeta is built for the long haul and is still in its formative stage. It is a delight to drink now, but it will certainly continue to develop in bottle for years to come. For near term consumption, afford this artfully crafted Priorat an hour or more of aeration in a decanter before serving between 58°-62° F. Anticipated maturity: 2022-2030. We strongly suggest laying a few extra bottles away to reap added dividends; we are still delighting in the 2004 and 2005 Pasanau Finca La Planetas. Enjoy!
A world-class wine such as the complex, robust 2015 Pasanau La Planeta calls for accompaniments of equal stature. The finest cuts of meat, a complex sauce, or a simple dish made from the very freshest ingredients are the hallmark of great food and wine pairings. Roast Leg of Tender Spring Lamb; Chateaubriand; and Loin Veal Chops, served with shitake mushrooms and an herb rice pilaf, are just a few of our favorite dishes to serve with Pasanau’s La Planeta. Pan Roasted Duck Breast over wild rice will also do this wine justice. Roast Quail, stuffed with apple-smoked bacon and mushrooms and served over a corn-based risotto makes for another tasty accompaniment. However, it is not so much what one serves with the 2015 La Planeta that matters as much as it is the quality of the ingredients. Pasanau’s wines are both bold and increasingly complex, making them ideal choices with foods comparable in quality and stature.
Since the 1990s, the Pasanau family and their beloved Priorat have achieved international fame. Today, Priorat remains Spain’s “hottest” wine producing region, fashioning an increasing number of sensational wines. At the forefront of Priorat’s success has been the Pasanau estate.
Pasanau commands the high ground in Priorat, literally and figuratively. At over 2,400 feet, Pasanau’s Finca La Planeta vineyard, which is devoted entirely to Cabernet Sauvignon, dominates Priorat’s arid, starkly beautiful landscape. Planted on gravely scree and slate, this 6-acre vineyard yields one of the boldest and most intense and unique of all Priorat wines. The Pasanau estate also includes equally impressive parcels of ancient, un-grafted Garnacha and Mazuelo vines from which the property’s Los Torrents Priorat is made. Unlike Finca La Planeta, which relies primarily on Cabernet Sauvignon, Los Torrents is a more traditional style of Priorat in that it contains equal parts Garnacha and Mazuelo from very old parcels that face each other across a ravine cut by water running through Priorat’s famous slate soil known as llicorella.
If Pasanau’s acumen with Finca La Planeta and Los Torrents were not enough to seal its place among the finest producers of Priorat, the estate’s Ceps Nous, a delicious contemporary style of Priorat comprised of fruit from younger vines, makes another equally compelling case for Pasanau’s exceptional quality and diversity. Comprised of the region’s traditional grape varietals (Garnacha and Mazuelo) along with healthy dollops of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Syrah, Ceps Nous offers a wonderful introduction to Priorat. Small amounts of excellent Viognier are also crafted at this exceptional property.
Working out of a small modern bodega that was completed in 1995, Pasanau has for several decades fashioned some of Spain’s most compelling wines. At Pasanau, grapes are routinely picked quite late, often not until late October, in order to extract the greatest intensity from each low yielding vine. All tanks are gravity fed and racking and fining are done only during a full moon using all natural ingredients, which says quite a bit about this estate’s commitment to excellence as well as its biodynamic practices.
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