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Condes de Albarei Albarino 2007

Albarino from Rias Baixas, Spain
  • WS90
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Winemaker Notes

"Focused and distinctive, this solid white offers pine, lanolin, pineapple and honey flavors, complex yet balanced. It's dry but rich. There's plenty of structure to stand up to rich dishes. Drink now through 2012."
-Wine Spectator,/i>

Critical Acclaim

WS 90
Wine Spectator

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Condes de Albarei

Condes de Albarei

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Condes de Albarei, , Spain
Condes de Albarei
Adega Condes de Albarei is located in the valley known as O Salnès, in the heart of D.O. Rias Baixas. It is two kilometers away from Cambados, in the province of “Galicia.” Galicia is one of the oldest areas in Spain, settled originally by the Celts. Considered by many experts to be the most prestigious white-wine producing region of Spain today, D.O. Rias Baixas has produced wine for centuries; though its renaissance owes much to the modernization of winemaking that has taken place over the last 15 years.

Founded in 1988 (the same year the D.O. Rias Baixas was officially granted its charter), Adega Condes de Albarei is a cooperative of 362 grower/owners. The winery is equipped with the most advanced technological equipment available. In a region where the average producer yields less than 4,000 cases annually, this winery is not only one of the largest at approximately 90,000 cases, but considered among the highest quality-producers in the entire region. The principal label is the Condes de Albarei Albariño, the first white wine from Spain to earn a gold medal at Vinexpo. In 1998, they received a second gold medal at Vinexpo.

Chateauneuf-du-Pape

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Rhône Blends

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With bold fruit flavors and accents of spice, Rhône red blends originated in France’s Southern Rhône valley and have become popular in Priorat, Washington, South Australia, and California’s Central Coast. In the Rhône itself, 19 grape varieties are permitted for use, but many of these blends, are based on Grenache and supported by Syrah and Mourvèdre, earning the nickname “GSM blends.” Côtes du Rhône and Châteauneuf-du-Pape are perhaps the best-known outposts for these wines. Other varieties that may be found in Rhône blends include Carignan, Cinsault, and Counoise.

In the Glass

The taste profile of a Rhône blend will vary according to its individual components, as each variety brings something different to the glass. Grenache, which often forms the base of these blends, is the lightest in color but contributes plenty of ripe red fruit, a plush texture, and often high levels of alcohol. Syrah supplies darker fruit flavors, along with savory, spicy, and meaty notes. Mourvèdre is responsible for a floral perfume as well as body, tannin, and a healthy dose of color. New World examples will lie further along the fruit-forward end of the spectrum, while those from the Old World taste and smell much earthier, often with a “barnyard” character that is attractive to many fans of these wines.

Perfect Pairings

Rhône red blends typically make for very food-friendly wines. Depending on the weight and alcohol level, these can work with a wide variety of meat-based dishes—they play equally well with beef, pork, duck, lamb, or game. With their high acidity, these wines are best-matched with salty or fatty foods, and can handle the acidity of tomato sauce in pizza or pasta. Braised beef cheeks, grilled lamb sausages, or roasted squab are all fine pairings.

Sommelier Secret

Some regions like to put their own local spin on the Rhône red blend—for example, in Australia’s Barossa Valley, Shiraz is commonly blended with Cabernet Sauvignon to add structure, tannin, and a long finish. Grenache-based blends from Priorat often include Carignan (known locally as Cariñena) and Syrah, but also international varieties like Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon. In California, anything goes, and it is not uncommon to see Petite Sirah, Zinfandel, or even Tempranillo make an appearance.

HNYCALALO07C_2007 Item# 97069

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