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Martin Codax Albarino 2012

Albarino from Rias Baixas, Spain
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    Winemaker Notes

    Martín Códax Rías Baixas Albariño is delicate and medium-bodied with a crisp, dry finish. Flavors of ripe apple, peach, pear and lemon zest are framed by bright minerality and hints of spice. This Albariño displays intense floral aromas and an attractive acidity, making it a versatile, food-friendly wine.

    The fruit for our 2012 Rías Baixas Albariño was hand-picked, destemmed and pressed in a gentle membrane press to preserve the delicate varietal characteristics of the Albariño grape. We used local, cultured yeasts to initiate fermentation, which occurred in stainless steel tanks for three weeks at a maximum temperature of 64°F. Fifteen percent of the blend underwent malolactic fermentation to enhance the flavor complexity in the wine, while the other 85 percent preserved the naturally crisp acidity of the Albariño grape. The wine rested on light lees for four months with no oak contact.

    Critical Acclaim

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    Martin Codax

    Bodegas Martin Codax

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    Bodegas Martin Codax, Rias Baixas, Spain
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    The Martín Códax Winery was founded in 1986 by a group of winegrowers. Established in Cambados, the capital of the Salnés Valley, the winery has become a point of reference within the "Rías Baixas" Denomination of Origin in Spain.

    The Albariño grapes Bodegas Martin Codax uses for its wines come from its own vineyards, and thus the high quality and purity of the fruit is guaranteed.

    Meticulous production methods combine the most advanced viticultural techniques (soil analysis, phytographic hygiene testing, progress control of the different stages of grape development...), with the most traditional know-how regarding vine growing and harvesting conditions.

    Rias Baixas

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    Named after the rías, or estuarine inlets, that flow as far as 20 miles inland, Rías Baixas is an Atlantic coastal region with a cool and wet maritime climate. The entire region claims soil based on granite bedrock, but the inlets create five subregions of slightly different growing environments for its prized white grape, Albariño.

    Val do Salnés on the west coast is said to be the birthplace of Albariño; it is the coolest and wettest of all of the regions. Having been named as the original subregion, today it has the most area under vine and largest number of wineries.

    Ribeira do Ulla in the north and inland along the Ulla River is the newest to be included. It is actually the birthplace of the Padrón pepper!

    Soutomaior is the smallest region and is tucked up in the hills at the end of the inlet called Ria de Vigo. Its soils are light and sandy over granite.

    O Rosal and Condado do Tea are the farthest south in Rías Baixas and their vineyards actually cover the northern slopes of the Miño River, facing the Vinho Verde region in Portugal on its southern bank.

    Albariño gives this region its fame and covers 90% of the area under vine. Caiño blanco, Treixadura and Loureira as well as occasionally Torrontés and Godello are permitted in small amounts in blends with Albariño. Red grapes are not very popular but Mencía, Espadeiro and Caiño Tinto are permitted and grown.

    Albarino

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    Bright and aromatic with distinctive floral and fruity characteristics, Albariño has enjoyed a surge in popularity over the last couple of decades. This grape claims dual citizenship of both Spain (in the Rías Baixas region) and Portugal, where it is widely planted in the northwest and is known as Alvarinho. In recent years, plantings have increased throughout California.

    In the Glass

    Bursting with rich, ripe flavor, Albariño can show flavors of orange blossom, grapefruit, lime, apple, pear, melon, and white peach. It may also have notes of almond paste, fresh cut grass, jasmine, or geranium. The best examples boast zingy acidity and often a briny, mineral quality. It is typically fermented in stainless steel to preserve the purity of its fruity flavors, though oak-aged examples can provide a weighty yet refreshing alternative to Chardonnay with surprising potential for aging. Due to Albariño’s thick skins and large number of pips, it often shows a bit of bitterness on the palate.

    Perfect Pairings

    Albariño loves seafood, and can be paired with a variety of marine delicacies. Its distinctive waxy texture and lemony acidity make it a perfect pairing with fresh sardines, oysters, octopus, or squid.

    Sommelier Secret

    Albariño is considered an aromatic variety, and actually shares many chemical compounds with Riesling, Gewürztraminer, and Muscat. If you enjoy these elegantly perfumed whites, chances are you’ll love Albariño.

    CGM5313_2012 Item# 132384