Spain located on the Iberian Peninsula, has over 2.9 million acres planted—making it the most widely planted wine producing nation but it is the third largest producer of wine in the world, the largest being France followed by Italy. This is due, in part, to the very low yields and wide spacing of the old vines planted on the dry, infertile soil found in many Spanish wine regions. The country has an abundance of native grape varieties, with over 400 varieties planted throughout Spain though 80 percent of the country's wine production is from only 20 grapes—including the reds Tempranillo, Garnacha, and Monastrell; the whites Albariño from Galicia, Palomino, Airen, and Macabeo; and the three cava grapes Parellada, Xarel·lo, and Macabeo. Major Spanish wine regions include the Rioja and Ribera del Duero which are known for their Tempranillo production; Valdepeñas, drunk by Unamuno and Hemingway, known for high quality tempranillo at low prices; Jerez, the home of the fortified wine Sherry; Rías Baixas in the northwest region of Galicia that is known for its white wines made from Albariño and Catalonia which includes the Cava and still wine producing regions of the Penedès as well the Priorat region. Spanish wine laws created the Denominación de Origen (DO) system in 1932 and were later revised in 1970. The system shares many similarities with the hierarchical Appellation d'origine contrôlée (AOC) system of France, Portugal's Denominação de Origem Controlada (DOC) and Italy's Denominazione di origine controllata (DOC) system.
- Item #: i_380625Bottle Size: 750MLAppearance: attractive straw color with hints of green in the rim. Clean and brilliant.Nose: very expressive and harmonious nose. Fine notes of white fruit (green apples, pear) and lemony aromas. Hints of herbs (basil) and flower blossom base notes. Surprising aromatic intensity.Palate: Clean and textured. Seductive exotic palate of pineapple and mango intermingled with refreshing citrus flavors amplified by minerally accents. Silky but yet full bodied, with long lingering finish. Round and very tasty.
- Item #: i_380557Bottle Size: 750MLWine Advocate: 91WINE ADVOCATE 91 POINTS - "The regular Albariño is one of the most reliable among the more available wines, and it tends to show well early on and also age nicely for a few years in bottle. The 2019 Albariño de Fefiñanes feels unusually expressive and ready, very approachable, with a harmonious nose but with none of that reductive character often found in the early bottled wines. It's floral, varietal, aromatic and clean, with a balanced palate combining volume with great freshness. I tend to like this wine two or three years after the harvest."
Located in the verdent Salnes Valley of Rias Baixas, proprietor Juan Gil de Araujo Gonzales de Careaga looks for a classical style of Albarino. “It must have very good acidity and fruity flavors: apple, citrus fruit and so on. I love the minerality of this area, from the granitic soils. I am looking for persistency in the mouth.”
- Item #: i_380768Bottle Size: 750MLWINE ADVOCATE - "The clean and fruit-driven 2019 Albariño shows the powerful house style of wines with volume and high acidity to compensate it. The wine matured in a combination of stainless steel and used oak puncheons and demi-muids for five months with bâtonnage. It has some balsamic notes of recently cut grass and a faint bitter touch in the finish. It finishes dry."
- Item #: i_382535Bottle Size: 750mlORGANICALLY GROWN GRAPES & PRACTICING BIODYNAMIC
From 30 year old vines, fermented with wild yeasts in stainless-steel vat with malolactic fermentation, and raised on the lees for 12-18 months in vat. This is one of the most singular and soil-driven Albariños from Rías Baixas. The result is a mineral-laden, beautifully aromatic, and textured wine that improves with time. Pure, distilled granite in Miguel Alfonso’s words. Perfect to pair with any fresh seafood.
- Item #: i_383963Bottle Size: 750mlSKURNIK IMPORTS - "A Cruz das Ánimas’ (trans. “The Crossroads of Souls”) is nothing short of explosive. It leaps out of the glass with aromas of oyster shell and etherized granite and follows through with a palate rich in marine-inflected yellow and green fruits and sporting a powerful surge of acidity."
With two and a half centuries of family tradition in the world of viticulture, Raúl Pérez Pereira’s profession seems to be more a matter of destiny than choice. It is a legacy that dominates his philosophy of work and one that swiftly directed him towards the family bodega, after a brief spell at a bodega in Penedès.
“For me the main thing is to understand my limits, to respect the environment and personal surroundings and above all to comprehend the wisdom of my ancestors and therefore to work accordingly”, he comments.
For him, fixed formulas do not exist, every wine, every soil, every parcel and every variety is different. “The differences are infinite, it all plays a part until your emotions take over”, he says.
Even the elaboration process is not subject to rules; it must be adapted to the characteristics of the soil which it must use according to its own development. For him, there are no rules, except one: to work in harmony with the ecosystem. “Our treatments,” comments Raúl, “respect the flora and the environment and we even manage to go without. Above all, we avoid systemic products”.
- Item #: i_382615Bottle Size: 750mlOne of the top, classic producers of Albarino in the world. The entry-level Zarate already has an above-average persistence and balance in the mouth. It's a notably "mineral" style of Albarino, with a zesty natural acidity that is balanced by added richness from ageing on the lees, citrus and firm-fleshed stone fruits, and the occasional partial malolactic fermentation.
- Item #: i_383438Bottle Size: 750mlA very nicely crafted, highly drinkable wine that offers up a lot of enjoyment. Reasonably serious, clean and fresh, this displays crushed sea shell, dense fruit, and well integrated brightness. Not overtly serious or complex, yet has depth and lip smacking qualities. Enough stuffing to to last perhaps 3 years or so.