Carlos Moro’s Spanish winery expands offering
SAN JUAN — American writer Clifton Fadiman once said that “to take wine into our mouths is to savor a droplet of the river of human history.”
Whether it is golden, rosy or rouge, wine has played a seemingly secondary yet unmistakable role in mankind’s hedonistic pursuit of happiness, transcending cultural barriers. Spanish enologist Carlos Moro, a contemporary Dionysus, has recently expanded his world-renowned line to indulge his expectant bacchants.
Born in Valladolid in 1953, Moro has served his country as the Ministry of Agriculture’s Agronomy Engineer, Deputy Secretary-General of the Spanish Food & Beverage Industry Federation, Technical Aeronautical Material Builders Association, and other posts.
However, his passion for wine led him to create the Matarromera Winery, established in the epicenter of Ribera del Duero in Basque Country. “With the creation of this company, [the] personal and professional life of Carlos Moro changed drastically,” his website says.
Nowadays, he is dedicated to the winery Bodegas y Viñedos Carlos Moro, which boasts a collection of eight intricately flavored wines proceeding from nine vineyards in San Vicente de La Sonsierra and La Villa de Labastida.
On Monday, members of the media were invited to experience fine dining in San Juan’s El Mesón Gallego, accompanied by the most recent additions to Moro’s line, two red wines, each with a complex array of scents and flavors.
To begin the palate trip, journalists, guests, wine connoisseurs, and Moro himself—accompanied by his wife, Esperanza Castro—were first served an elegant plate of four appetizers: crisp bread with tomato and cured ham, cod croquettes, Galician-style octopus, and grilled cuttlefish in a delicate garlic sauce. Gracing this assortment of delicacies was a playful rosé from Spain’s Cigales with a sweet, yet mildly acidic aftertaste.
Immediately after, the group had the first entrée, pouting fillet served over a garlic muleteer sauce along a single broccoli floret and a large carrot slice. Stepping up from the delicate sweetness of the rosé, guests had a taste of one of the new wines in the collection, Carlos Moro 2015, which was met with exceeding expectations due to its flavorful and lingering aftertaste.
Moro explained that after undergoing fermentation, this cherry-colored wine is “transferred to barrels made of 65% French and 35% American oak, where it spends 12 months aging until November of the following year, when it is bottled to allow it to spend the necessary length of time in the bottle for marketing in 2017.” Each bottle is sold for $20.
Moved by this imposing beverage, the bar was set high both for the second entrée and the other wine selection. Alas, the tender piece of lamb and savory potatoes elicited exclamations of approval across the table, but even that was secondary to the unanimous praise for Moro’s indisputable feat, the Carlos Moro Prestigio. Prestigio, Spanish for prestige, is a stronger version of its cousin.
This wine’s aging process takes place in barrels made of 80% French and 20% American oak for 18 months. It was only recently ready for bottling, in January. The result “is a wine with a strong, intense layer of brilliant dark cherry colors, a great aroma, a complex and voluptuous character, and a complex, lingering flavor,” its description reads. Each bottle sells for $28.
After several modest refills of each red wine and a chocolate mousse pyramid per guest, Moro pondered where he should take the official promotional photograph to promote his products in Puerto Rico. Almost in unison, the group recommended El Morro, the island’s most famous and distinguishable landmark. Foreseeing good business, the table toasted to Moro, good wine, and the prospect of carefree indulgence, bottled for convenience.