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Catalunya a Return Home

Introduction

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"How can a place capture your heart so quickly?"

Those of you who follow my Twitter, Instagram and Facebook page, know from the steady flow of photos that the past week I have been in Catalunya, the northeastern portion of the Iberian peninsula.

Earlier this year I submitted an entry from this wine blog about two wines from DO Catalunya, “Poema White and Red Two DO Catalunya Wines from Catalan” I enjoyed sharing the little I knew about Catalan wine, the traditional foods, grape varieties and the long history of wine production in this corner of the Iberian peninsula. *See note on the contest intent at the bottom of this post.

I know a great deal more today.

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I then forgot about the contest entry. Two weeks before the award ceremony on June 26th, I was notified by DO Catalunya (Consell Regulador de la Denominació d’Origen Catalunya) that I was a finalist. Would I be attending the BlocDOCat gala in Barcelona? Thankfully, the DO Catalunya organization arranged my flight and my hotel accommodation. Yes, my head was spinning. Only two weeks to arrange for my first visit to Barcelona and Catalunya. And maybe an award winner?

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Reception for the BlocDOCat Gala.

Everything surrounding Catalan wine and Catalunya was compiled of a series of unplanned, synchronous events. The two sample wines sent to me for review, the two books sent to me by my sister-in-law, the fact that my sister-in-law lives just outside of Barcelona, the unexpected email inviting me to enter a submission for the contest. How did this happen?

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Visiting old vines of Mas Llunes in DO Emporda.

Over the next series of posts, I will explain how this happened, what happened and what I learned. I believe it will take at least eight posts to cover all I want. At least eight. I learned a great deal. Of course, there will be much information on Catalan wine.

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Cava production is serious business.


Catalunya I miss you terribly. I felt at home my first night. I had a sense of Déjà vu many times this past week. The places I visited, the food I ate, the people I met and the sound, the sound of Catala, much seemed familiar. How do you bundle that up? How do you fly away and leave it behind? I will be asking myself many questions as I reflect and write and edit photos. You can expect a full recounting of what I learned, felt and experienced in Catalunya. There is much to share. I miss you terribly. 

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"/bi/ is the phonetics of the verb "to be" (be)".

Tonight I will mention that I met a young winemaker, Anna, who has taken something old and is making it new again. I was quite impressed by her passion and energy, I feel she is reflective of what DO Catalunya represents. And after more thought, I believe it is important to expand on this concept of Catalunya taking something old and making it new. Appropriately, as in /bi/.

In the following posts there will be much to share and discuss.

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Catalan olives, jamon iberico and cheese plate.

This morning, on my three hour drive home from Seattle, I realized that I should not be sad, that I should feel happy and blessed that I now know that I have a second home. A home in Catalunya. A home I can return to. Yes, I am already planning my return trip to Catalunya. To home. 

- William Pollard Jr.


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BlocDOCat Awards Gala 2016.
Acknowledgements.

First I must give a sincere thanks to DO Catalunya and the judges, writers, and bloggers who judged my writing worthy of consideration. Thank you.

Xavier Pie, President DO Catalunya
Anton Castella, Secretary DO Catalunya
Clara Dalmau, Communications DO Catalunya

To my Family, my Catalan family, words are not enough. You opened your home to me, you shared your family, mother and brothers, friends and neighbors. Thank you Crystal, Manuel, Raimon, Anna Marie.

To the wine making community of Catalunya, you opened your cellars, shared your stories, passion, your talent, old vines, and wines. Thank you, many times over thank you.

Salut!

* Note: CONTEST AIMS
"DO Catalunya is organizing the V BlocDOCat in order to reward individual initiatives promoting the values ​​of wine and vine culture through their blogs."
"The Designation of Origin Catalunya has an innovative and creative vision of wine and with this vision wants to recognize virtual spaces of reflection, information, exchange of ideas, reviews and Catalan wine tastings, a tool that we consider increasingly important and with a great impact on the dissemination of wine culture, especially in Catalunya."
"With the intention of recognizing bloggers outside of Catalunya, who are interested in Catalan wines and spread them under the seal of quality and origin of any of the twelve Catalan Denominations of Origin, this V BlocDOCat Contest has the category for posts made ​​outside of Catalunya, relating to Catalan wine with designation of origin."

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