Windswept White from the Western Coast of Spain

Windswept White from the Western Coast of Spain

Welcome the flavors of spring with this Albariño selection

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Many of you are familiar with the Albariño grape, (Alvarinho in Portugal) that produces vibrant whites from Galicia, in the upper left-hand corner of Spain. Galicia’s subregion of Rías Baixas contains windswept vineyards, extremely affected by their ocean proximity, with grapes containing a “crunchy,” thirst-quenching acidity. Today’s example, a new release from Viña Zaco, spends extra time on the lees (or yeasty sediment) before undergoing a second, (malolactic) fermentation. Because of the grape’s inherent sharpness, this second fermentation fattens the bouquet and smooths out the mouth texture while retaining the refreshing qualities that have contributed to Albariño’s success.

2015 Albariño, Viña Zaco, Rias Baixas $17.50 srp

Very light, golden color. A generous lemon curd nose accompanied by salt breeze, wildflower, mineral cut and pineapple/grapefruit elements. The mouth texture is rounded yet citrusy, with ginger-tinged flavors and a refreshing, yet soft, finish. A touch of residual sugar makes it pleasurable with or without food. Cod, (bacalao) mackerel or all manner of shellfish would welcome this. Drink now-2018.

88/100 points

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Arturo Ciompi
Trained as a classical clarinetist and conductor, Arturo plied his trade for many years in New York, performing with the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, New York City Opera, the American Symphony and countless chamber music groups. While living in Durham, Arturo became the wine manager at two iconic gourmet stores: Fowler’s in Durham and Southern Season in Chapel Hill. He had a wine spot on NPR in the ’90s and has been a continuously published wine journalist since 1997. He has won national awards for his work and is currently writing for Durham Magazine and its weekly blog, “Wine Wednesdays”. In addition, he loves teaching the clarinet. Read more on his website.