Diner with Randall wasn't all the graft that week. The next day I met Jose Pastor, who had just come back from Tampa after drinking a container of old wine with P****** henchman Dr. J. Miller. Jose Pastor is a dream. A sweetie. A cutie. And his wines are pretty tough as well. He is doing his best to save Spain from disappearing over into the dark side of wine. For a brief while, sitting on the stool at Solera I was happy. I was hopeful. I forgot that the print world is tanking and if I found something to write about no one could assign it. For a moment, a brief moment, the world was sane and people I was positive, would need to know about these wines. Hits? Canary Islands! He tasted me on Bodega Tajinaste, Orotava Valley of Tenerife From the the largest of the Canary Islands, this grape is Listan Negro grown in donut holes in black soiled hills. The vines are twisted. Braided. I can't figure it out. But I've got to go and see this up close and personal. Taste? It's all tank. A touch of green, yumminess to brighten the earth and dolcetto like dustiness. I have no idea where you can find it. I'm on the prowl myself. Going up to the Ribeira Sacra, tucked into the southern part of Galcia, seek out: Enologica Temera Alodio This puppy is from Mencia, and has a plunky and gorgeous nose with lemon and kirsch. And if you can find it like I did (K&L in California) a bargain at $14. Okay, it SHOULD be $9, but it's 2009, so what can we do? But the biggest what the hell, give -me-that-bottle moment came with: Primitivo Quiles 2002 Alicante Raspay Riserva Tinto Brut It's Monastrell (the Spanish Mourvedre), and definitely for those who love Lopez de Herdeia. It's a three-star old world moment with elegance and oxidation and church spice. They've got this over at Chambers Street for $23.