Ciudad Real, may 07-09 2019

Ciudad Real, may 07-09 2019





Short wine lists at reasonable prices, main conclusion reached by various experts on the "current moment of wine"

The round table made an appeal, indicating that in the eagerness of making similar wines, the identity of different Spanish wines should not be lost

07.05.2009 | 

There are occasions for white wines, for red wines and for rosés... There are many moments of wine, all depending on the meaning we want to give to the word 'moment'. Some of them have come under analysis during the round table "The Moment of Wine", directed by Antonio Jiménez, Director of the Intereconomía TV program "El gato al agua" (Cat in the Water).

Participating in the round table have been Pedro Larumbe, renown chef and owner of the restaurant Pedro Larumbe; Mª José Monterrubio, co-owner, sommelier and maître d'hôtel of the restaurant Chantarella (Madrid), laureate of the 1st Prize to the best Maitre at "Madrid Fusión 2008". Javier Gila, sommelier at Lavinia and former head of sommeliers at the Hotel Ritz of Madrid, as well as laureate of the 1st Prize "Custodio Zamarra" Sommeliers at Madrid Fusión 2008.

The four have talked about gastronomy, the specialized store and table service, shedding light on the different 'moments' of wine, be the same in that pertaining to the current market situation, fully immersed in an economic crisis, or relative to the choice of a certain type of wine to accompany a menu.

Such a pity that the Spanish film industry has not made a movie about wine such as "Sideways"

Jiménez took the first turn, declaring himself to be "a lover of wine with a capital L", sector of which he shares its philosophy, apart from thanking the Minister Elena Salgado for "allowing us to be the only television show in which the debate takes place around a glass of wine, and for your Ministry's contribution to its success", to then immerse himself in the debate at hand. After declaring that he loved the movie "Sideways", he expressed his disappointment because no Spanish director has decided to make a film on this theme.

In the moderator's opinion "wine in Spain enjoys great health, due to its diversity and its attractive quality-price ratio", something in which the participants of the round table coincided, although Gila introduced a variant: "Despite finding ourselves in a brilliant moment in the elaboration and diversity of wine, this is not the case with its consumption, percentage that must be increased, attracting the younger generations to this culture".

Mª José Monterrubio (Chantarella): "About half of the diners are now asking for wine according to the grape variety and not the geography"

María José Monterrubio indicated that it is not only that now we have many wines from which to choose, but that "the customer is now far more knowledgeable about wine and they follow the recommendations, trusting in the sommelier or the professional". This sommelier sees a change in the attitude of the diners, "my customers are now asking for wine according to both grape variety and geographical demarcation, when what used to predominate was the geography". And she made an appeal for reasonable prices in restaurants, "customers don't appreciate being ripped off when it comes time to pay the wine".

Pedro Larumbe: New, short, wine list, with wines rotating and at reasonable prices

Pedro Larumbe, expert creative Chef who opened a new restaurant in May called "El Plató", because it offers the possibility of participating in a TV show while dining, will be establishing changes in his wine list, thus responding to the demand he has detected. "I offer a short wine list in this new restaurant, in which 30 brands will be rotating and prices of which will stand between 10 and 17 Euros, promoting the "wine per glass" formula, because I think this can encourage young people to start consuming wine, and because we find ourselves at a time when we cannot include expensive wines in the list", Larrumbe said.

This Chef also complained that "wineries are producing too many brands, the market is absolutely swamped with them".

And the knowledgeable party in brands was Javier Gila, who handles 4500 wine references at Lavinia (quite probably the most important chain of specialized stores in Europe), who assured that "we are trying to enhance Spanish wines" and he scolded the winemakers: "Good wine comes from ancient vines, we must not lose our identity". For Gila, "one thing is diversity and another is if Spain was to lose the identity of each of its areas or varieties, because if we all make similar wines, using the same varieties, it will end up impoverishing us".

He wagered on elaborating balanced wines and spurring on national consumption and commercialization abroad, and he is more inclined to "blends" in areas with more sun, from Madrid down on south.

Javier Gila: "The sommelier and the waiter must be humble and, much attention must be paid to the type of glass in which wine is served and to how it is served"

And he even gave out some advice to sommeliers and waiters, "the professional has to be humble when making suggestions, and attention must be paid to the glass in which wine is served and to how it is served, because the ritual is being neglected and that can affect the idea that a consumer or diner has about a wine".

During the chat that followed the round table, answering questions from the audience, those present talked about rosés, which are starting to be demanded by the younger generation due to the influence of the Italian sparkling wines; the idea that there are different wines according to the sex of the person consuming it or elaborating it was discarded. And what was made very clear was that we find ourselves at a time in which we can not go overboard with the price of wine in the restaurants, because in our country, or rather, the difference in our country when dining, is that in contrary fashion to Europe, here we first order the food and then the wine we will be drinking.