Spanish Wine experts share in the Spain Uncorked podcast their expertise about everything from gender equality in the industry to cava news and sherry pairings. What better way to learn about Spanish wine than by listening to a podcast featuring a range of experts and Masters of Wine?
Almudena Alberca MW, César Saldaña, Elisa Errea, Pedro Ballesteros MW and Álvaro Ribalta MW are guests on the XYZ podcast, hosted by Michael Fagan, an independent consultant, educator and presenter, and also the Managing Director of Uncork1 Inc.
Here they talk about everything from Tempranillo wines to sherry and winemaking in the Canary Islands to their professional journeys in the industry. Ready to soak up their wisdom? Just hit play.
Almudena Alberca MW
The number of women in Spain influencing the wine industry is at an all-time high. One of those distinguished women is Almudena Alberca MW, who has more than two decades of experience in the wine world. She is the first female in Spain to become a Master of Wine and she is also the Technical Director at Grupos Bodegas Palacio. In this podcast, she talks about her professional journey and the goals she set, and the challenges she faced, along the way. She also discusses her thoughts about what’s driving the growing number of women in the sector and what needs to be done to support gender equality in the future.
César Saldaña, president of the DO Sherry Regulatory Council
In this episode, the hosts take a deep dive into the world of sherry by interviewing Cesar Saldaña, president of the DO Sherry Regulatory Council. Saldaña talks generally about Spain’s most famous fortified wine, touching on subjects like the importance of educating the public about sherry wines, the Solera system, sherry grape varieties, the aging process, storing wine, sherry glassware, food and wine pairings, and much more. He also answers important questions: Does sherry wine improve with time? Is there such a thing as vintage sherry? Can sherry be used in cocktails?
Elisa Errea, the founder and director of the internationally-awarded wine school in Spain, The Wine Studio, joins the podcast to talk about some of the country’s emerging regions, such as Green Spain (Galicia, Asturias, Cantabria, and the Basque Country) and its unique climate within Spain, the history of growing grapes in the mountains and in higher elevations, “extreme” winemaking in the Canary Islands and its highly unique soils and old vines, and Atlantic wines. She also offers her best wine recommendations—something you definitely don’t want to miss!
Pedro Ballesteros MW
Tempranillo takes center stage in this podcast, which features special guest Pedro Ballesteros, a Master of Wine with an MA in Oenology and Viticulture, among other impressive credentials. Ballesteros gives listeners an insider’s view of the grape variety, discussing topics like why Tempranillo has so many different names, Tempranillo vs. Garnacha and their links to Rioja, the art of blending Tempranillo grapes, and the drivers of change in today’s style of Rioja wines. Find out why even the best wines from Rioja are fairly-priced and accessible to most, why American oak is prevalent in the region, and the difference between Crianza, Reserva and Gran Reserva and how to pair them with food—including a surprising fast food recommendation.
Álvaro Ribalta MW
Learn all about cava in this episode, with special guest Alvaro Ribalta, Master of Wine. Ribalta will bring you up to speed on all things sparkling wine, covering topics like champagne vs. cava, the grapes primarily used to make cava, the ins and outs of making rosé cava, why cava is more affordable than champagne, and efforts to bring prestige to the cava brand by launching the single-vineyard cava classification. He also provides some backstory to understand the move by a handful of producers to leave DO Cava behind and what transpired. Learn about some of the maverick producers breaking the rules and hear his insightful cava wine and producer recommendations in and outside of the DO.