Drinking a wonderful Mallorquin wine in a glorious setting is one of the great pleasures of visiting or living on this island. Fortunately, in Deià there are plenty of places to discover delicious Mallorquin wine without having to leave the peace and tranquility of the village.
Sometimes, however, the wealth of choice for wine lovers can be rather bewildering. Fortunately, we have experts of the calibre of Belmond La Residencia’s Antoni Bujosa to share their knowledge of Mallorquin wine with us.
I recently had the pleasure of talking Mallorquin wine with Toni and I’m delighted to share the fruits of our conversation.
First of all, Toni, could you tell me a little bit about yourself?
I was born in Soller. Immediately after I left school, I started in the hospitality industry on the island. I began as a waiter, became a chef de rang and gravitated towards learning more and more about wine. I have had the pleasure of visiting many wine cellars, tasting wine made from some of the world’s most prestigious winemakers.
Since 1989, I’ve worked at Belmond La Residencia. I’ve been the hotel’s food manager since 2007. The Wine Spectator guide has given us their Best Award of Excellence for several years running.
What’s your view of the current state of play regarding Mallorquin wine?
As is the case with so many aspects of Mallorquin life, the island wine scene is a mix of traditional values and modern trends.
Looking at the wines themselves, wines from Determinació D’Origen (DO) Binnissalem are moderate and traditional.
The autochthonous grapes of Moll and Prensal in the whites give the correct acidity and freshness with a full Mediterranean flavour. In terms of red, the DO’s Ull de llebre or Callet are affable, warm-bodied wines with a good-looking appearance.
Chardonnay, Muscat, Muscatel of Alexandria, Parellada, Reisling, Viognier and the native Premsal Blanc i Giró Ros grapes predominate in the white wines of these regions. This results in flavoursome, buttery wines with plenty of body.
The reds of these areas are made with grapes such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Merot, Monastrell, Pinot Noir, Syrah and varieties native to the area. This makes for fruity, presumptuous wines that are more tannic, in a Mallorquin version of the Bordeaux style.
Have you introduced any special themes or innovations this year as far as wine at Belmond La Residencia is concerned?
We’re constantly evaluating and refining our wine collection and, every year, we refresh our wine menu – exploring new areas, discovering new wines and keeping in touch with the latest trends.
Right now, I’m working with our sommeliers and executive chef to find a new, exciting way to pair wines for our menu. Our approach now is to start with a wine tasting and have the chef create or adapt a menu to suit the wine.
Do you have any particular recommendations for wines that people should look out for to buy for themselves, not just at La Residencia?
As I always say, bad wines don’t exist. There’s a wine for every different moment or event in your life. You just have to think with who and when you will share it.
Are there any wine tasting events or wine-related experiences people can have at La Residencia, whether they’re a guest of the hotel or not?
Yes of course. The activities we offer include wine pairing with Mallorquin, Italian or French wines, including olive oil in the tasting. Also, we have four paired wine menus which include cava and champagne, light and crisp white wines, great Chardonnays, light reds like Pinot Noir or full-bodied red wines followed by dessert wines such as Muscatel.
We currently have over 470 selections in our wine menu and we welcome readers of the Deià Olive Press calling in to the hotel to embark on a voyage of discovery in a glorious setting.
Thank you, Toni. I’m sure our readers would love to experience Mallorquin wine at Belmond La Residencia.
Should you be a guest of Belmond La Residencia, you have a wonderful opportunity to combine two of the great pleasures of being on this island: hiking and tasting Mallorquin wine in its natural environment. The hotel offers Wine Hikes where guests meet an expert guide at the hotel for a not at all challenging walk through the glorious landscape of the West Coast to end up at the Son Vives winery and bodega.