It’s hard to find “GREAT” wines that are sub $15/bottle. But if you are going to find one, it is probably going to be from Spain. Often times the wines are usually over the top in some way or another. But with Honoro Vera, the success rate of finding a great bottle of wine at a great price is pretty astounding. The 2019 Organic Monastrell is no exception. The grapes are farmed in 100% certified organic vineyards, and the process is also certified organic. The wine is certified vegan as well (the use of fish bladders or other animal based proteins are used to clarify wines, beers, etc.) This wine is 100% Monastrell, another name for the Mourvedre grape. It comes from the Jumilla region of Spain, a large wine producing region that is relatively obscure (weird, right?). The soil in this area is sandy, loose, well draining and devoid of much organic material. The climate is continental….ie. hot during the summer, cold during the winter and it gets just a little influence from the Mediterranean.
We popped this bottle and went straight to glass and then revisited over the course of 2 hours to see how the wine would evolve with the introduction of air. The wine definitely benefited from the additional time to decant prior to drinking. That said, our notes were gathered after about an hour of decant time and then nosing in the glass. In the glass the wine is clear with no sediment or gas, it is a deep ruby / pale purple color in the glass with medium concentration. On the nose we got a lot of ripe black cherry, fennel, cola, bitter herbs / green stem characteristic. On the palate this has really good structure. Really good tannic structure giving the wine some grip on the palate, medium to medium plus acidity. Plenty fruit on the palate. Ripe Cherry, Dried Cherries, Dried Strawberries, minerals like wet stone, spice. The wine has a good length finish that has a slightly bitter bight that mellows as the wine opens up with time. The alcohol is at 14.5% and it does give a little latent alcohol burn which I normally equate to higher ABV which makes me think that this may be higher than 14.5% but still within the allowable threshold of variation.
This is a really good wine for the price. It definitely needs time to breathe so if you plan to drink it right away, pop it, pour it into a decanter and let it sit for an hour. If you dont have a decanter, pour it into a water pitcher and then pour it back into the bottle with a funnel after it breathes for an hour. Your experience with the wine will be greatly enhanced if you do this.
For fun, try a glass right out of the bottle and compare with a glass after it breathes for an hour+.