There is some wonderful coverage today in The New York Times of monastrell wines - and some savory pairings.
A Grape Adds Distinction to Its Workhorse Status, By Eric Asimov
"In the last 25 years, though, monastrell has redefined itself. More precisely, the producers of the Levant, primarily in sun-drenched appellations within sniffing distance of the Mediterranean like Jumilla, Alicante, Yecla and Bullas, have invested in the potential of monastrell. They’ve vastly improved the viticulture and the winemaking, and have raised their ambitions accordingly. If they are not producing great wines exactly, the best bottles are a far cry from the indifferent wines of old, and offer a new and welcome expression of what monastrell from this land can offer." ...
Read the whole article here >> http://www.nytimes.com/2012/10/31/dining/reviews/monastrell-grapes-add-distinction-to-their-workhorse-status.html
Pairings: Lusty Food Tailored to Monastrell Wines, By Florence Fabricant
"A SEASONING here, an ingredient there, and a dish assumes an identity of choice. Fill your shopping bag with bell peppers, tomatoes and garlic, buy saffron and paprika, and you have Spain on your culinary GPS. Some of the dominant aromas and flavors of the Monastrell wines in our tasting were smoke, earth and spice, bound by a decided meatiness suitable for all kinds of lusty food." ...
Read the whole article here (and see a beautiful image) here >> http://www.nytimes.com/2012/10/31/dining/lusty-food-tailored-to-monastrell-wines.html