Good Morning Gentle Readers,
Torres Coronas is a blend of Tempranillo (temprah-knee-yo) and Cabernet Sauvignon (14%) grapes that comes off rather nicely. It's easy on the palate and the pocketbook. A little cherry, a little licorice, and the spicey notes that Tempranillo is known for and you end up with an under $10.00 wine that is suitable for pizza, pasta, tapas, or Castilian garlic soup.
Legend has it that the monks from French Burgundy brought Tempranillo to Rioja. Certainly it is Spain's noble grape and some claim there is a genetic connection to Pinot Noir.
On the other hand, the 1982 Torres Gran Coronas is an absolutely stellar glass full of liquid velvet. Shared a bottle and some bubble gum prime rib with an old friend at a cheesy eatery just off the Pennsylvania Turnpike somewhere between Oz & Deliverance where they just hadn't heard about horseradish yet.
Breezewood itself is nothing to write home to your ma about, but it slides quickly as you get off main drag. Arriving early and looking for a Pepsi, we wandered into a dilapidated store on the other side with worn hardwood floors that hadn't seen a finish in decades. A couple of barefoot girls of indeterminate age wearing threadbare calico dresses hung shyly behind an angular and bony woman who stood sideways, meticulously counting change out to the clerk. The ancient register would have brought three month's wages at any LA antique store. Ours was the only car parked out front along with the two horses, which meant the rest of the patrons had walked. Pretty sure that nobody in the place wore shoes and most were missing more than a few teeth. On the way out Mrs TWC said something about not being in Kansas. Those images of a different America stick in your mind.
Later, we hooked up with Jim and his Gran Coronas and the incongruity was forgotten in good conversation. Unfortunately, the next bottle of wine was purchased from the restaraunt and rendered even more forgettable than it otherwise would have been by the simple act of following the Gran Torres in the batting order.
No Crème Brûlée either