Showing posts with label Loueira. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Loueira. Show all posts

Friday, December 6, 2019

Green Wine For The Holidays

The Vinho Verde wine region in northern Portugal is home to some of the best white wines this side of Albariño.  Vinho Verde means, "green wine," which is not a color reference but a suggestion that the wine is quite youthful.  The white wines of Vinho Verde typically have a wonderful acidity and a slightly fizzy nature.  The lower alcohol content makes them great choices for summer sipping by the pool, but they work quite well as aperitifs at holiday parties and pair graciously with cheese plates, pasta or holiday dishes.

The Portuguese wine company Quinta da Lixa is run by the Meireles family.  They employ winemaker Carlos Teixeira to create wines like the 2018 Aromas Das Castas Grande Escolha Vinho Verde.

This wine is a blend of Alvarinho and Loueiro grapes from the Vinho Verde sub-regions of Moncao and Melgaco.  Half of the grapes are Alvarinho and 50% half are Loureiro.  The Loueira grape gives the wine its wonderful floral note, while the Alvarinho brings the fruit. At 12.5% abv, the alcohol content is a little higher than usually found in Vinho Verde wines.

This yellow-gold wine smells like a fruit basket.  Lemon, lime, peach, nectarine - a cornucopia.  There is also a beautiful floral note which is almost washed away in the tidal wave of fruit.  The palate shows plenty of lemon and lime, with a brisk acidity and finish that stays in the mouth a long time.  The stone fruit aspect brings a slight sweetness to the wine to differentiate it from, say, a Sauvignon Blanc.  Great summer sipper?  Sure it is.  But a wine like this will serve well at holiday parties and alongside turkey and ham.

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

O Rosal! Rias Baixas Albariño!

The folks from the Spanish wine region Rias Baixas have a great product to push.  Albariño is not only a delicious white wine on its own, but it's one of the more food-friendly grapes you'll find in the world.  In fact, Albariño seems to crave a food pairing so it can show its best. 

Albariño wines tend to show up online a lot, in virtual tasting events where wine writers gather together with a sponsor to sample a few selections.  In a recent online tasting, writers commented on the great pairings they were having in real time.  A Spanish omelet, chicken and waffles, bouillabaisse, roasted fish with citrus and turkey are just a few of the inspired pairings that sprang from the tasting.

The various grapes in the 2017 Santiago Ruiz Albariño wine were grown in the O Rosal area of Rias Baixas.  The blend consists of 76% Albariño, 11% Loureiro, 5% Treixadura, 4% Godello and 4% Caiño Blanco.  Alcohol checks in at the customary 13% abv and the bottle retails for $20.

The charming map on this wine's label dates back several decades, when the winemaker’s daughter sketched it for the benefit of those attending her wedding at the estate.  I can't vouch that carrying the bottle on a journey to San Miguel de Tabagón will keep you from getting lost, so stick with the GPS. 

This wine - more than simply Albariño - offers the scents and flavors of the grapes that make up a quarter of it.  It offers a pretty nose of white flowers and apples.  The palate adds stone fruit to the green apple notes.  The acidity lags a bit, but is still zippy enough, while there's a nice finish that is genuinely refreshing.

Monday, May 7, 2018

Albariño: Terras Gauda O Rosal

There's a Snooth virtual wine tasting coming up on May 16th that involves Albariño wines from Spain's Rias Baixas region of Galicia.  I'm tasting nearly a dozen different Albariños for that reason - not because it's spring, or because it's almost summer, or because I love Albariño.  Although each of those reasons would have been enough of a convincer.  I'll keep you posted on details, but it's usually easiest to jump on Twitter and join the fun.

Bodegas Terras Gauda makes their O Rosal Rias Biaxas from grapes grown in one of the subregions of Rias Baixas, O Rosal.  It's a little piece of land butted up against the Miño River to the south and the Atlantic Ocean to the west.

Terras Gauda has three wineries and a vegetable cannery under its corporate umbrella.  The O Rosal Valley winery is a couple of decades old and now produces about 1.5 million bottles of wine each year.  This Albariño blend is their flagship wine.

The Terras Gauda O Rosal Rias Biaxas White Wine is not a varietal wine, which is how Albariño grapes are often vinified.  This one is 70% Albariño, 20% Caiño Blanco and 10% Loueira, the latter two grapes being found in the northeastern corner of the Iberian peninsula.  Its alcohol content is low at 12.5% abv and it sells for as little as $12 online.

This wine has a lovely golden-green hue and a brisk nose of stone fruit, Meyer lemon and flowers.  The palate shows those qualities plus a hefty load of minerals and acidity, enough to make oysters a great idea. 

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