For the first of our Wine & Lit series of journal entries, Dillon has picked a Spanish wine, Cara Bassa 2012. In thinking about a complementary literary work for it, I did a little Internet research. I found that Cara Bassa is the name of a site in Sardina (island region of Italy) where there are a number of neolithic era "standing stones." These stones were carved into megalithic monuments by ancient peoples and often inscribed with mysterious symbols. The larger, more complex sites (i.e., Stonehenge) are associated with the Celts.

But that's an Italian connection. The only Spanish connection I could find was on a website that offers horseback riding trips in Spain (interesting idea). The site implies that there is a trail through the Pyrenees mountains called the Cara Bassa.

So themes of New Age and journeys led me to a book that has spoken to me over the years. It's The Camino by Shirley MacLaine, about her 500 mile trek over the ancient pilgrimage trail called the Santiago de Compostela Camino that stretches across northern Spain. It was a journey of spiritual discovery for her, as it has been for seekers over the centuries.

The Camino has a very New Age flavor to it, which is not a taste for everyone, but its ambiance of mystery, travel and exploration and even facing fears make it very palatable to the open-minded reader. It's one of my favorite books and it always prompts my old urge to travel and explore, and at the end of the day, to kick back with a glass of Cara Bassa and recount the day's journey with friends.

You can find my review of The Camino here.

And here's Dillon's Pick for the wine we can enjoy as we contemplate the mystery of the Santiago de Compostela Camino.

Dillon's Pick – Cara Bassa 2012

Hello fellow wine lovers, I am Dillon. I have recently begun my exploration of the world's wines, and will be sharing with you my experiences. So far, I find I prefer wines that are boldly fruity, with a slightly dry finish, but I'm sure my tastes will evolve as I go.

My first pick for Wine & Lit is a Spanish wine that was recommended by my boss (I work at a Wine and Spirits store). It was an amazing wine for the price. I believe it is about 8 dollars, but it tastes more expensive. It has a deep red color and an amazing bouquet. I detect blackberry and maybe some dark cherry in it. It was not aged in oak, though, and I usually prefer oak-aged, but this wine does well without it. The first taste is quite impressive. It's not sweet, and it starts with a slightly acidic mouth-feel with little fruit-forward. It finishes with some tannins so this isn't for someone who get headaches or prefers sweeter wines.

I'm impressed with Spanish wine, and Cara Bassa is a good one to start us on our long journey of wine discovery.