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94pt Clos Pissara Arrels Sangre de Garnatxa 2012

$35.00 $18.99
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There are two things to expect with a Clos Pissara wine. One, there’s not going to be much of them to go around. Two, they are going to be an utter delight to drink. The winemaking duo of Master Somm Emmanuel Kemiji and Maruxa Roel makes sure this outstanding limited production expression of Spanish Grenache not only hits these marks, but does so at full force. Persistent aromatics shift to a soft yet complex palate of ripe berry, subtle spice, and nuanced essences of graphite before ending with a dusty finish.

About the wine

If knowledge is power, then the Clos Pissara’s one-two punch of Emmanuel Kemiji and Maruxa Roel possess the strength of a Spanish armada. The twosome’s off-the-chart combined acumen when it comes to Spanish wine and viticulture allow them to pick precisely the right grape needed, wherever that grape may be growing. Just as importantly, their smarts allow them to know precisely what to do with the fruit once it’s in their grasp. Their abilities are on full display with this splendid Grenache, whose origins solely stem from a six-acre vineyard that grow nothing but the varietal on their 15-year old vines. It’s a source that Emmanuel can trust, because he’s part owner of the Montsant-planted vineyard. This carefully sourced fruit serves as the backbone of a delightfully approachable treat whose easy-drinking freshness makes it a tremendous label for mealtime, patio time, or even a little “me” time. Distinct, driving aromas transition to a persistent palate presence and a soft, rounded mouthfeel. Ripe red and black berry notes and a hint of spice are subtly dusted with essences of shoe polish and graphite. Fine, slightly dusty tannins lead to a satisfying finish. It’s a label that looks very impressive within the confines of a wine collection. With just 178 cases produced, obtaining one also may feel like quite the accomplishment.       

WinemakerEmmanuel Kemiji and Maruxa Roel
- 94 pts, Alex Casella, WSET Advanced
VineyardsSix-acre vineyard owned by Emmanuel Kemiji and three chef friends
Cooperage: 33% New French Oak, 33% 1st and 2nd Yr 
ABV: 14.8

About the winery and vineyard

With all apologies to Tony Bennett, it may be fair to say that Clos Pissarra’s heart is in San Francisco. It was there, in the middle of a long lunch, when Miura Vineyards proprietor and acclaimed Master Sommelier Emmanuel Kemiji floated the concept of purchasing some Spanish vines with a few buddies. Several years and several purchased vineyards later, this seed of lunchtime inspiration has blossomed into an exciting passion project built around the concept of producing hyper-limited production labels. A modest six-acre vineyard Emmanuel and his buddies bought back in the day serve as the root of this exciting Grenache, and with good reason: located in the Priorat wine region, it’s made up entirely of 15-year-old Grenache vines, which are ensconced in a well-draining mix of clay and soft slate soil. The vineyard’s terroir produces ideal representations of the rounded yet intensely concentrated expression that’s long been Priorat’s calling card. In this case, it also produces an immensely approachable Grenache that seemingly made for get-togethers of all stripes, up to and including an extended business lunch.

About the winemaker

Emmanuel Kemiji had to move halfway around the world to get bit by the viticultural bug. The life-altering chomp occurred when he was living abroad in Spain. There, he’d go hang in Madrid with his uncle, who would generously share the fruits of his wine collection. A deep appreciation for Spanish wines quickly developed, and the decision to jump into wine world wasn’t too far behind. Needless to say, it was the right call, as Emmanuel’s hauled in hardware for his work on both sides of the industry. He’s nabbed Sommelier of the Year and Wine Director of the Year honors for his “front of the house” work with the Ritz-Carlton. His vintner skills aren’t too shabby either, as he’s also been recognized as one of the “Top 10 Winemakers to Watch.” At Clos Pissara, he’s joined by Maruxa Roel, whose own storied career stands up to Emmanuel’s accomplishments rather nicely.  Prior to Clos Pissara, she enjoyed a celebrated stint at Mas d’en Gil, where her wines routinely captured mid-90 scores. What’s more, her experience as a lab technician for a wine co-op gives her the capacity to be in tune with the science of grape growing.Her unique skill set, coupled with her immense experience with Spanish terroir allows her to be the Lennon to Emmanuel’s McCartney; a partnership that propels this special label to unprecedented heights.

94 pts, Alex Casella, WSET Advanced

The wine has a stimulating appearance of dark ruby purple color while showing slight highlights of maturity at age 5. The aromatically intriguing nose is bearing loads of sweet black fruits stewed green coffee beans, black licorice, ground spice and wildflowers are all yielding tension which draws you in for a taste. As the palate echoes the nose with all the sweet dark fruits and ground spices, it does not disappoint and is facilitated by a full body structure with broad tannins.  It finishes with a hedonistic yet fresh finish and true character Grenache from Montsant. This is such a lovely wine for under $20.00 pairing with wild game, stews, and roasted or grilled meats and heartier dishes. Drink now or hold for another 5 years in the cellar.


Other Details

Alcohol percentage:
Clos Pissara, 2012 Arrells Sangre de Garnatxa Spain!
MS Emmanuel Kemiji - $18 94pt Clos Pissara Arrels Sangre – Under $20!
MS Emmanuel Kemiji - $18 94pt Clos Pissara Arrels Sangre – Under $20!
Master Somm Emmanuel Kemiji’s approachable Grenache is an easy-drinking label for mealtime, patio time, or even a little “me” time.
Master Somm Emmanuel Kemiji’s approachable Grenache is an easy-drinking label for mealtime, patio time, or even a little “me” time.
Rare - Only 178 Cases Produced
“Top 10 Winemakers to Watch”
2017-4-20 23:59:00 -08:00:00
#review=Alex Casella, WSET Advanced:
94 / 100
Free shipping on 6 or more bottles - mix & match all wines!
Last Day!: MS Emmanuel Kemiji - $18 94pt Clos Pissara Arrels Sangre

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