Celler Capçanes, Mas Collet 2005 Montsant


From £5.99 and €5.35

Find this wine

Five years ago, Jancis made the Mas Collet 2001 her wine of the week. My choice this week is an indication of the outstanding consistency of quality and value for money represented by the wines from Celler Capçanes, a co-operative established in 1933 in the Montsant DO in Catalunya, north-east Spain. Montsant produces wines similar in style to those of Priorat but generally at lower prices. Celler Capçanes' excellent website (in a choice of Catalan, Castilian and English) gives details of the history of the company, pointing surprisingly to the production of a kosher wine in 1995, and the new facilities required so to do, as the turning point in wine quality.

The blend seems to vary little from year to year; in 2005 it's 35% bush-vine Garnacha, 25% Tempranillo, 25% bush-vine Cariñena and 15% Cabernet Sauvignon, grown on alluvial and slate soils at 150-450 m above sea level at yields of 40-50 hl/ha.

Among the recently tasted Waitrose bargains, this wine stood out for its combination of intense, sweet dark fruit, firm structure and lovely freshness. But it's far more than a fruit bomb; there's a savoury sour cherry tang on the finish and the slight sweetness added by the oak spice morphs into a more complex meaty flavour on the palate, thanks to the extra time this wine has been allowed in bottle – unusual for a wine at this price. 

The winemaking is straightforward: each variety is fermented separately at 26-29°C in stainless-steel tanks, followed by malolactic conversion, then nine months in French and American oak, some new barrels but others up to five years old (light and medium toast). After blending, the wine spends six months in tank before bottling for the components to marry.

This is seriously good value for money. Perfect for drinking this minute but you could probably hang on to it for at least another year or two.

Stockists in the UK include Waitrose (and Waitrose Direct), Booths, Gauntleys of Nottingham, D Byrne (Clitheroe), Swig (SW London) and everywine.co.uk. 

According to the producer, the wine is also available in Quebec (SAQ), Sweden (Systembolaget), Germany (La Tienda), Holland (Bart Wijnimport), Belgium (Portovino), Japan (The Vine), Denmark, Finland, Norway and Switzerland.

I have not been able to find a stockist for this wine in the US but Eric Solomon imports others from higher up the the Celler Capçanes range.

Find this wine