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Wine from Rias Baixas

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Wine from Rias Baixas

Nestled in the extreme northwest of Spain, Rias Baixas is a wine region that is located in the province of Pontevedra and south of A Coruna, in Galicia. Rias Baixas is known for white wine, produced from the Albariño grape variety.

Historians believe that the grapes were introduced to Rias Baixas around the 12th century by the Cistercian monks when they established the Monastery of Armeteira. The five sub-regions, Condado do Tea, Soutomaior, Ribera de Ulla Val do Salnés and O Rosal; also have a long history of wine production with their own traditional styles. The sub-regions have different soil types and range from sandy to alluvial, granite and slate.

Rias Baixas has an Atlantic climate with sea fog and wet winters. The average rainfall is high with mild temperatures. During the summer, temperatures rarely exceed 86°. The coldest areas in the regions are Val do Salnés and Ribera de Ulla, because of their coastal location. Condado do Tea is the warmest, but also the coldest with heavy rainfall and frequent frosts.  

Rias Baixas white grapes that are authorized include Albariño, Loureira Blanca, Treixadura, Caiño Blanca, Torrontés and Godello. The red authorized varieties are Caiño Tinto, Espadeiro, Loureira Tinta, Sousón, Mencía and Brancellao.

 

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Fefinanes Albarino de 1583 Albarino 2021

Fefinanes Albarino de 1583 Albarino is made from 100% Albarino.
Aged for 5 months in oak barrels (a combination of fine-grained American and French Allier barrels).
1583 is the birth date of the Viscount of Fefinanes, Gonzalo Sarmiento Valladares, builder of the Castle of Fefinanes, in Cambados.

They wanted to pay tribute to their ancestor with this wine that managed to reach a perfect harmony between the fruitiness of the Albarino grape and the complexity brought by the oak aging.

Lovely straw yellow color, clean and bright. The nose is reminiscent of ripe crystallized fruit and spices. The palate is elegant, round and well balanced, with a silky texture.

Excellent with shellfish, grilled or stewed fish, white meats, poultry.

 

Fefinanes Albarino de Albarino 2021

Fefinanes Albarino de Albarino is 100 percent Albarino

Fresh fruit aromas of apricot and peach slices with notes of lemon and green apple. Pretty notes of honey and wet nutmeg, and the mouth is round, clean, and pleasant with baked apple, honey, and lemon.


This is a classic Albariño which is good young, but actually improves over two to three years and remains quite drinkable for up to five years. Owner Juan Gil comments that the wine really starts to come into its own in June/July, and he actually prefers it 18 or more months after it's made. A Fefiñanes "vertical" of three or four vintages can provide some most interesting surprises.

Review:

"One of those textbook Albariños that delivers the goods, year in, year out, this is a very pure expression of the grape, with no lees ageing at all. Sourced from vineyards in the Cambados sub-region, all on decomposed granite soils, it has lovely pear and lime zest flavours and engaging focus, minerality and stony freshness. Hard to beat at the price. 2022-26"

- Tim Atkin (Rias Baixas Special Report 2022), 93 pts

 93 Points
Fefinanes Albarino de III Anos Albarino 2019

Palacio de Fefinanes Albarino "III Ano"  is made from 100 percent Albarino

The III Año shows all the expressiveness of the Albariño grape, with full nose of mature fruit and a mineral character. Complex and meaty with firm structure in the mouth, it promises a splendid evolution which will favor a long life for this elegant wine with personality.

Aged for 3 years on the lees in stainless steel tanks.

Wine is aged for a total of 6 months: 4 months in French and American Oak barrels. No new oak, only 1, 2 and 3 year old barriques. During these 4 months, wine is aged on the fine lees with frequent Batonnage (stirring of the lees) in order to get the most expressive notes from the Albarino varietal. Then, it is transfered into a stainless steel tank, which allows the oak aromas to be assimilated and integrated.

1583 is the birth date of the Viscount of Fefinanes, Gonzalo Sarmiento Valladares, builder of the Castle of Fefinanes, in Cambados. They wanted to pay tribute to their ancestor with this wine that managed to reach a perfect harmony between the fruitiness of the Albarino grape and the complexity brought by the oak aging.

Excellent with shellfish, grilled or stewed fish, white meats, poultry

Review:

"It's almost a crime to drink this incredible wine young, such is its proven, almost Riesling-like ability to age in bottle. Bottled late after eight months on lees and a further two years in tank, it's a focused, structured, mineral-edged white with notes of citrus and blackcurrant leaf and a racy, stony finish. Val do Salnés Albariño at its chiselled best. 2022-32"
- Tim Atkin (Rias Baixas Special Report 2022), 97 pts





 97 Points
Gundian Albarino 2021

Gundián is a local surname & the name of several Galician villages (3 in the area) as well as a famous bridge in Galicia - thus the bridge graphic on the label. The Gundián Bridge, also known as the Gundián Viaduct, is a bridge that spans the Ulla river pass, on the old railway line between Orense and Santiago de Compostela.

Clean and bright wine, straw yellow color with greenish flashes. On the nose, it has fruity and floral aromas of high intensity, especially apple and stone fruits (apricot). In the mouth, the freshness and youth of the Albariño stand out with a well balanced acidity which makes it savory, sweet and glyceric.


Minius Godello 2018

Minius Godello is made from 100 percent Godello.

Minius is a wine with a very live yellow color with green reflections. Highlighted on the nose are the citrus and floral aromas, along with white fruits notes and herbs like fennel. It is soft and elegant in mouth that together with the acidity gives a fresh and persistent finish.

Strict and careful grape selection in the vineyard and winery before destemming. Cold maceration at 10ºC during 3-4 hours. Presing. Alcoholic fermentation begins at 16,5 ºC in stainless steel under an automatic temperature control. Stabilization of the wine in isotermic tanks, filtering and bottling. Resting in the bottle during 30 days prior distribution.

Pairs with apperitives, rices, grilled seafood, white fish in sauce, cheeses, poultries


Pazo de Senorans Seleccion de Anada Albarino 2012

Pazo de Senorans Seleccion de Anada Albarino is made from 100 percent Albarino. 

Straw yellow with greenish tints, vivid and brilliant. High intensity and very expressive. Profusion of aromas with traces of mineral. Great volume and ample body leaving a lasting impression from beginning to end.

Reviews:

The bright yellow, almost fluorescent 2012 Albariño Selección de Añada has to be one of the finest released since the first vintage of 1995. It matured for more than 36 months with the lees in small stainless steel tanks and then was bottled in April 2021. It has great aromatic complexity with no oxidation whatsoever. It has notes of pine needles and dried herbs, quince paste and a hint of smoky lees and petrol. The palate is seamless and precise, with 13% alcohol, nicely integrated acidity and very good balance. It's still incredibly young. Pazo de Señorans has been great at showing the aging potential of Albariño, releasing older wines. Their current vintage of the Selección de Añada is 2012, now 10 years old, and they are slowly releasing other labels outside the rush for newly bottled wine, which they also suffer from some segments of the market.

-Wine Advocate 95 Points

Style: with personality, Color: bright straw, Aroma: white fruit, citrus, fine lees, hydrocarbon, Mouth: full, tasty, elegant, persistent

-Guia Penin 98 Points


Tech:

ALCOHOLIC STRENGTH:
13 % proof


PRODUCTION:
16.000 bottles


TYPE OF WINE:
Aged on lees


FERMENTATION:
Stainless steel


PERIOD OF AGING IN VAT:
More than 30 month on lees


ORIGINAL VINEYARD:
Los Bancales


TYPE OF PLANTATION:
Pergola system (vines)


AVERAGE AGE OF VINEYARDS:
More than 45 years


HARVESTING METHOD:
Manual


DATE OF HARVESTING:
September


YIELD PER HECTAR:
5.000 kg/ha


MACERATION:
Pellicular (in presses)


ALCOHOLIC FERMENTATION:
Controlled at 18º


MALOLACTIC FERMENTATION:
No


OPTIMAL PERIOD OF CONSUMPTION:
5 years



 Wine Advocate: 95 98 Points
Valminor Albarino Rias Baixas 2021

Valminor Albarino Rias Baixas is made from 100 percent Albarino. 

Albariño is a Portuguese grape, native to the Miño River region, which separates Galicia & the Rias Baixas DO from Portugal. Albariño has a characteristic citrus aroma & high acidity.

Valminor Albarino presents a yellow straw color. On the nose, the wine shows a wide fruity range of aromas, with notes of fresh grapefruit, apricot and melon. In the mouth, Valminor combines fruity flavors and freshness with a rounded acidity, resulting in a balanced wine that boasts an opulent taste and slight spritziness. 


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