What started as a small wine festival in the town of Cambados in the Rias Baixas to celebrate its local grape varietal, Albarino (Alvarinho in Portuguese), has now become a huge international celebration. International Albarino Day marks the start of Albarino week in the Rias Baixas region where the town is located on the Atlantic coast of Galicia, Spain. This small area which is made up of 4 estuary inlets and spreads from Santiago de Compostela in the north to the coast of Portugal in the south has about 20,000 wineries.

Rias Baixas Region Map
Image by: Eric Vialle

It is no wonder that 90% of the wine produced in the DO (Denominación de Origen) of Rias Biaxas is Albarino because this versatile white varietal flourishes in moist, mild coastal climates. The terroir gives it wonderful floral and fruit notes as well an excellent acidity. It is a great varietal for an aperitif, but it is also very food friendly and pairs well with many a light summer’s meal.

Sara Lehman from the blog “Somm in the City” suggests: “Pairings for this lovely Spanish grape would be: Summer sun (as this is totally a great wine that can be enjoyed on its own), Manchego Cheese and fresh Honey Comb, Cranberry, Plum and Prosciutto Salad, and even Creamy Pasta.

Some of our Albarino favourites include:

Bodegas Carballal, Estylo Puro 2013

Adegas Luz, Abadia de Tortoreos 2011
Lo Nuevo, Covello 2012

Columna Albarino 2013

Paco & Lola, Albarino 2011

Paul Grieco, New York Restaurateur and Sommelier gives a brief, but fantastic overview of Albarino. Spoiler alert: We specifically liked his Zamboni metaphor.


What better way to spice up a boring weeknight than with a celebration of this delicious Spanish wine. Try it with this mouth-watering Paella recipe. You won’t be sorry!

 

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