Vina Robles Albarino 2014
Growers and makers of expressive, approachable estate wines from Paso Robles, California, Vina Robles owns and farms six estate SIP® Certified Sustainable vineyards in five sub-districts in the region. First class hospitality service is offered by way of unique, memorable experiences with wine, food and music at their core. The vineyards & winery are owned and managed by two Swiss families who have been farming winegrapes in Paso Robles for more than 20 years
Known primarily for their Cabernet Sauvignon and Petite Sirah, the Vina Robles lineup includes small lots of a wide range of varieties and creative blends. While adhering to traditional winemaking methods, veteran winemaker Kevin Willenborg implements modern technologies to make his estate wines with minimal intervention.
Paso Robles has made a name for itself as a source of supple, powerful, fruit-driven wines. But with eleven smaller sub-AVAs, there is actually quite a bit of diversity to be found in this inland portion of California’s Central Coast.
Just east over the Santa Lucia Mountains from the chilly Pacific Ocean, lie the coolest in the region: Adelaida, Templeton Gap and (Paso Robles) Willow Creek Districts, as well as York Mountain AVA and Santa Margarita Ranch. These all experience more ocean fog, wind and precipitation compared to the rest of the Paso sub-appellations. The San Miguel, (Paso Robles) Estrella, (Paso Robles) Geneso, (Paso Robles) Highlands, El Pomar and Creston Districts, along with San Juan Creek, are the hotter, more western appellations of the greater Paso Robles AVA.
This is mostly red wine country, with Cabernet Sauvignon and Zinfandel standing out as the star performers. Other popular varieties include Merlot, Petite Sirah, Petit Verdot, Syrah, Grenache and Rhône blends, both red and white. There is a fairly uniform tendency here towards wines that are unapologetically bold and opulently fruit-driven, albeit with a surprising amount of acidity thanks to the region’s chilly nighttime temperatures.
Bright and aromatic with distinctive floral and fruity characteristics, Albariño has enjoyed a surge in popularity and an increase in plantings over the last couple of decades. Thick skins allow it to withstand the humid conditions of its homeland, Rías Baixas, Spain, free of malady, and produce a weighty but fresh white. Somm Secret—Albariño claims dual citizenship in Spain and Portugal. Under the name Alvarinho, it thrives in Portugal’s northwestern Vinho Verde region, which predictably, borders part of Spain’s Rías Baixas.