Drinking Today: Portico da Rio Albariño

I completed almost all of my fall gardening today, so I’m celebrating with a glass of white and a late lunch. I have crab-stuffed flounder in the oven, and I’m opening a bottle of Albariño to go with. I picked this baby up at Trader Joe’s earlier in the week.

If you’re not familiar with this grape, you should be! It’s still somewhat obscure, because it doesn’t get a lot of shelf space and is grown almost exclusively in the Rias Baixas region of far northwestern Spain. I like Albariño because it has a fuller body – up into white Rhone, Viognier, and Chardonnay territory – while still displaying the brightness and elegance of a good Sauvignon Blanc or Pinot Gris.

Portico da Ria Albariño (2011) Rias Baixas, Spain – $9.00

Photo0234Color: light golden in color – darker than lemons, lighter than goldenrod or honey.

Aroma: citrus and melon fruit, with a good acidic edge, followed by some honeyed floral notes.

Taste: nice – a combination of citrus and light melon, with a good, mouth-filling texture and a touch of smoky dried fruit. Somewhere between marmalade and candied citrus rind on the finish, and it’s plenty long.

A great bottle of white to have on hand, especially as an alternative to Chardonnay when pairing with medium-rich seafood. This would work well with scallops in cream sauce, shrimp salad, or grouper – and especially well with sushi!  Recommended!




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