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Nobody expects the Spanish disposition (Rias Baixas, Spain – Day Two)

When people think of Spanish wine 90 times out of 100 they would think of red wine. Nine times they may think of cava depending on where they are from, and maybe one time they would think of sherry. Chances are they wouldn’t think of white wine but there are two places in particular where white wine is pretty much all they make. The first is Rueda where wines made from the verdejo grape are one of the fasting growing in the country. The other place is Rias Baixas where they make wines mostly from albarino. In my opinion Rias Baixas white wines are the most Spanish that a wine can be. Firstly as a country that is mostly surrounded by water they eat a lot of seafood and other fresh and often salty dishes that are perfect matches with albarino thanks to its high acidity and zingy freshness. Secondly the country gets very hot as I have discovered myself, and as a chilled wine albarino is much more refreshing than a glass of Rioja tempranillo or oloroso sherry. As albarino wines are almost always made in a simple way they are also a reflection of the simple lifestyle that Spanish people lead, particularly in the current difficult economic situation. Then add to this the fact that albarino is very cheap to produce and can therefore be more affordable than many wines produced in Spain for the Spanish people. There aren’t really any complicated terms or levels of quality like crianza or reserve that mean almost nothing, it is simply good or it isn’t.  Albarino can be enjoyed across the whole country with any myriad of different dishes and is so easy to drink. What I’m trying to say is that Spanish should be drinking more albarino, but only as long as there is enough for the rest of us too.

Have you ever seen razor clams before?

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Castro Martin – 20/07/2012

2011 Albarino A2O
Clean fresh very fruit-strong citrus lychee lime. Vibrant fresh fruit, quite tight and some nice sharpness. Looking a little too linear and sharp at the moment, needs to settle a little before bottling.

2011 Albarino Family Estate
More subdued fruit and more floral notes, slightly richer but softer in it’s ripe citrus notes. Fuller texture and ripeness, even a little fruit sweet viscosity. Less sharp, but no less focused. More of a textural extension on the palate.

Val do Salnes 2010
Showing much more minerality, looking slightly tired and fat, but still retaining plenty of freshness and fruit characters. Riper and more viscous and round, matured nicely.

Family Estate 2010
More subtle and complex on the nose, slightly flintier and finer, slightly green and herbal notes. Wonderful lines, crisp straight and pure, zippy yet textured and characterful through the palate. Finesse and brightness with mineral concentration, very slight floral notes.

Angela and Andrew at Bodegas Castro Martin

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