A note from Jessica Salyer, Curate Wine Program Manager.
Here in Western North Carolina, hiking is a big part of life! Late spring is an amazing time of year when the mountain laurels are blooming, and it's time to get out and explore, forage for chanterelles, play in a mountain stream, and connect with nature. For this month's shipment, I wanted to draw a parallel with the hiking culture here, and a popular hike – actually a pilgrimage – in Spain: El Camino de Santiago. For this shipment, we're focusing on wineries along the pilgrimage route. Read more about the Camino below, and explore the wines with us! Maybe you'll be inspired to add a new trip to your bucket list!
The Camino de Santiago, or “Way of Saint James,” is a popular pilgrimage leading to the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela in Galicia, Spain. Santiago de Compostela means “St James of the Field of Stars,” named for the Apostle Saint James the Great, who is believed to be buried there. This pilgrimage isn’t one particular trail, but a large network of routes that begin in different cities throughout Spain, Portugal, and France. Most popularly hiked is the Camino Francés – a nearly 500 mile trail starting in St. Jean-Pied-du-Port near Biarritz in France, crossing the Pyrenees and continuing west across Spain. People began walking these trails as early as the 9th century, though in the beginning, pilgrims’ “starting point” was their own front door! Like the Appalachian Trail that runs through WNC, Camino trails beckon explorers from all walks of life.
Be it for spiritual or recreational reasons, hundreds of thousands put their feet to the trails each year, stopping to stay in albergues (hostels) along the way. Travelers taking on the Camino will pass by some of Spain’s most famous cathedrals, medieval towns, and – lucky for Spanish wine lovers – wine country! La Rioja, Castilla y León, or Ribera del Duero are a few wine regions hikers may encounter along the way. In the Navarro region, Bodegas de Irache even has a wine fountain, where hikers can stop for a sip of red wine from the tap!
Featured Importer for the October shipment!
I have the priviledge to introduce you to someone I'm fortunate to get to work with quite often - Marta Plana. Marta is the founder of The Winetones, originally from Catalonia. She as born in a small coastal town just south of Barcelona in the Penedes area. In the wine industry for almost 20 years, she works hand-in-hand with more than 50 wineries from across Spain.
One of our go-to importer partners, we are big fans of Marta's wines, work ethic and impossibly fun attitude. You may have met her yourself at the inaugural Chow Chow festival in 2019, where she was an integral part of our booth. She was pouring La Sueca sangria and El Bandarra vermouth to go along with Chef Katie Button's paellas each day. You also may have met her in New York, where she also contributed to the Curate pop up at Chefs Club (supplying vermouth, sangria, decor and a smile!).
We will feature three of the wines in her portfolio for our very first wine club shipment - scheduled for the first week of October. Join the club before October 1st to make sure you recieve the first shipment!
The Winetones hold 3 distinct portfolios:
- Catalan Winetones: the portfolio that gives the name to the company, is a curated selection of family owned wineries from all over Catalonia, considered among the top within their regions.
- Democratic Wines: The home of a few truly fresh and modern brands, that gives a twist to the most traditional and popular wine-based drinks from Spain. Brands that epitomize the Barcelona vibe!!
- Vintae: Vintae is an innovative, young and dynamic family owned enterprise, which elaborates wine in 15 different Designations of Origin in north Spain. A portfolio full of great value wines from the most well known regions from the north.
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