Friday, August 3, 2012

A Wine Day For Albarino

Since August 4th, 2012 has been designated National Albariño Day by TAPAS (Tempranillo Advocates Producers and Amigos Society) I thought I’d dig up some notes on a few noteworthy California Albariños I’ve enjoyed.

White wine from Edna Valley - near the sleepy California town of San Luis Obispo - is a favorite of mine.  The minerality in wines from that area comes through in flinty, chalky fashion.  Tangent Winery is also a favorite of mine in Edna Valley.  Tangent’s Albariño shows a tropical nose with nuts and orange peel on the palate - and tons of minerals.  Winemaker Christian Roguenant  says, “My aim with this wine is to keep to the classic style of traditional Albariño from the Rías Baixas region of Spain, showcasing its vibrant acidity and fresh aromatics.”  Tangent offers a full menu of alternative whites, including their Ecclestone blend, a kitchen sink mix of all their varieties, including Albariño.

Paso Robles’ Lone Madrone Winery makes a white blend called La Mezcla.  Grenache Blanc and Albariño make a wine with great acidity, and the minerals really stand out to help shape a wonderful crispness.  There are plenty of tropical notes on the nose and the palate.  Their recommendation of pairing with oysters, clams or ceviche is completely justified.

Bonny Doon Vineyard’s Randall Grahm makes the Ca’ del Solo Albariño.  Citrus rind, wild herbs and green almond flavors dominate this crisp and refreshing Santa Cruz take on the Spanish grape.

Bokisch Vineyards' Terra Alta Vineyard Albariño is picked early to imitate the style of Albariño found in Galicia, Spain.  Markus Bokisch represents Spanish varieties in Lodi.  That may be a lonely job, but it makes him plenty of amigos.  He recommends trying his Albariño with seafood or anything spicy.

Verdad Winery Santa Ynez Valley Albariño is laden with limes, oranges and minerals.  Louisa Sawyer Lindquist gives it a little oak for complexity.

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