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Friday, July 17, 2015

Awesome Albariño

                                        Galicia's spectacular coastline, ground zero for Albariño

If you don’t know Albariño, put it at the top of your summer’s list of white wines to try.  Everyone we serve it to always inquires about the wine and asks where it can be purchased.  It’s different.  It’s interesting.  It’s subtle.  It’s masculine.  It’s feminine. 

Albariño is the name of the wine and the grape.  Although this grape originated in France, it is now rarely grown there----Spain is the country that produces quintessential Albariño. The Galicia province, Spain’s most western area just above Portugal, is the epicenter for Albariño production.

If you’re a lover of aromatic Viognier, dry Gewurztraminer or Argentina’s Torrontes, you’ll no doubt be equally attracted to Albariño.  All of these wines offer enticing aromas of peaches and apricots.  Another compelling feature is Albariño’s high acidity which allows it to be a food-friendly choice.  Last, but  no means least especially during the heat of summer, Albariño is low in alcohol, typically only 11.5 – 12%.

Rias Baixas (ree us buy shussz) is Galicia’s premium wine district for Albariño.  Look for the Rias Biaxas D.O. label on the bottle which proves the origin of grapes from this important district.  Recommended producers worth searching out (including on the Internet) are:
  • Forjas del Salnas:  boutique winery pushing the quality envelope
  • Pazo de Senorans:  killer wines from this benchmark producer
  • Palacio de Fefiñanes:  the oldest producer of Albariño…and one of assuredly the best

If you are coming on next year’s harvest tour to Spain and Portugal, we will be visiting all of these rock-star wineries.   If not, order a bottle and discover and enjoy this varietal.

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