Like the minerality and acidity of Riesling, the body and white stone fruits of Viognier, and the floral notes of Pinot Gris?
Then you should check out Albarino–and there’s no better day than today, the Second Annual Albariño Day, Thursday, May 9th, 2013!
The second annual Albarino Day caught me by surprise but fortunately, I have a few bottles of Albarino from Paco & Lola around. I saw it on sale and I went for it because it is such a wonderful wine with lots of bright acidity with tangerine and lime and that’s seafood friendly–especially with my beloved fresh raw oysters from Jolly Oyster at the Ventura State Beach!
Plus just a few days ago I picked up two bottles of Old Creek Ranch Winery’s Albarino de Moto (regularly $22) at my son’s school fundraising silent auction! (Old Creek Ranch Winery is a my local pick for Wine Tourism Day; read more about it here).
Unfamiliar with Albarino? Probably because most of this dark green, thick-skinned grape is grown in Spain, with very little of it found in the US. Albariño accounts for 90% of plantings in the Rías Baixas region of Spain. But as it grows in popularity, expect to find more of it here!
Want to join in celebrating Alabarino? Organizers say, “It’s easy! Just pull out your smart phone, tablet, or laptop, enjoy a glass of Albariño, and share your thoughts via social media. Post about why you love Albariño, tweet your tasting notes, or Instagram a photo of the meal you’re having alongside the wine. The possibilities are endless! Just use hashtag #AlbarinoDay and tweet @RiasBaixasWines all day to chat with Albariño lovers from around the world.”
Plus there’s a virtual #AlbarinoDay contest: “Spread the word about Albariño, try something new, and use your creativity, and you might just be selected to some fantastic AEC prizes. Several winners will receive an official AEC t-shirt, tote bag, wine bag, and more, and one lucky winner will receive $75 worth of Albariño wines to continue his or her exploration.”
Looking at the bottle, you’d think this is a playful, youthful, refreshing, vibrant wine–alive and energetic–and you’d be right. A pale yellow with a hint of green, it is zesty and dances on the tongue. Stones, salt, sea, green apples, fresh pineapple with a bit of petrol and graphite on the finish (that’s not a bad thing, it’s just an observation).
If you’re familiar with sauvignon blanc, and looking for something new, try this Albarino: it’s more similar to a California sauvignon blanc than a NZ one, but it might be more similar to an Argentinean Torrontes. Cork closure. Retails between $15-20. I found it on sale for about $7.50. I tried it, loved it with oysters and pesto as well as clams, and bought several more bottles to have some for myself and to bring to parties. It’s also good with ham and I bet it would be wonderful with goat cheese, brie, salami, and a baguette.12.5% alcohol.
Paco & Lola hail from Galicia, that part of Spain on the Atlantic just north of Portugal. Raised by hippy parents using sustainable techniques, Paco & Lola play well alone or with others.
Invite Paco & Lola to come play with you! Available widely.