Rías Baixas Tasting – 23 April 2013
The Guild were very honoured that Izaskun Zurbitu, Marketing Director from the Economic & Commercial Office of the Spanish Embassy, hosted a tasting of the wines of the Rías Baixas region of Spain. The tasting was presented by Lisa O’Doherty, a member of the Guild of Sommeliers, who has represented Ireland both nationally and internationally on our behalf. She is wine buyer and consultant for “The K Club”.
Rías Baixas appellation background
Situated in north-west Spain near Pontevedra and south of Santiago de Compostela.
DO (Donominacion de Origen) 1988. Vineyard area = 4,048 hectares.
5 sub-zones – Val do Salinés, Condado do Tea, O Rosal, Ribeira do Ulla and Soutomaior
Hilly vineyards with granite soil. Mild climate influenced by the Altantic ocean with enough rain to ensure a green landscape and plenty of sunshine to allow the grapes to reach full ripeness.
Training systems – Pergola and Cordon
Grape varieties – Albariño is the principal variety, also Loureira, Treixadura, Caiño, Godello and Torrontés.
Producers are mainly co-operatives with 6,712 growers
18 million litres exported (54% of production) Ireland is the second most important market per capita.
Five Albariño wines from the excellent 2011 vintage were tasted
Maior de Mendoza Sobre Lías 2011, Albariño, 12% abv. www.maiordemendoza.com
Importer: Distinctive Drinks, Colin Egan 086 0488383
Pale straw, with hints of pear and apple on the nose. Clean, spritzy and a very fruity style – ripe citrus and melon. Crisp, juicy and a lingering finish.
Albarino de Fefiñanes 2011, Bodegas del Palacio de Fefiñanes, 12.5% abv. www.fefiñanes.com
Importer: Smith & Whelan Wines Ltd. Sacha Whelan 087 2618754
Aromatic aromas, with green citrus fruits and minerally hints. Excellent fruit on the palate, with grapefruit, lemon/lime flavours. Good weight and crispness. Ideal with Thai food.
Gran Bazán Ambar 2011, Agro de Bazán, Albariño 12.5% abv. www.agrodebazan.com
Importer: Bubble Brothers, Billy Forrester 021 4845198
Pear fruit dominates the nose. Attractive lemon and grapefruit flavours, with lipsmacking acidity and a salty, minerally edge on the aftertaste.
Albariño Sobre Lías 2011, Bodegas Castro Martin, Albariño, 12% abv. www.bodegascastromartin.com
Importer: James Nicholson, John Masterson 086 0446472
Floral scents, with touches of peach. Lovely palate of white peach, apricot and grapefruit. Zesty, minerally and a very classic Albarino style. A good match for pork.
Sin Palabras 2011, Adegas Castrobrey Albariño, 12.5% abv. www.castrobrey.com
Importer: Clada Group Ltd. Declan Owens 091 706600
Herbaceous, mineral and peach aromas lead to a palate full of stone fruit, citrus and lemon zestiness. Clean, with a silky texture and a long, juicy finish.
Tasting notes by Catherine Griffith