with our wine correspondent Cormac Power, proprietor of The Fat Angel Restaurant, Cathedral Square, Waterford
Albarino is mostly grown in the northwest of Spain in Galicia. For anyone who has visited this region you will know that this part of Spain is cool, green and sees its fair share of rain.
Here they have found in Albarino the perfect match for these conditions as the grape is thick skinned which helps them withstand the damp climate and result in white wines that are high in flavour and acidity.
It is this thick skin that also allows the wine to age better than most other white wine varieties.
It can also on occasion mature very well in oak, another benefit of its skin type. It is in the Rias Baixas zone that you will find the grape in plentiful supply.
As near ago as 20 years there was little known of Albarino, while now no wine list would be complete without it. Not surprisingly the wines are ideal with any of the much loved seafood dishes around here, but also drinks well on its own.
In Portugal, it is known as Alvarinho, and it has long been a contributor to Vinho Verde. This is the classic slightly ‘spritzy’ wine of varying quality but at its best is summer in a glass. California and Australia have taken up the Albarino challenge with promising results. Albarino can be a refreshing breakaway from the go to wines such as Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Grigio.
Barbuntin Albarino Galicia Spain: Wonderfully aromatic Albarino with a pronounced minerality and hint of salinity owing to the region’s proximity to the Atlantic Ocean. Green apple aromas and citrus flavours give this wine a crisp acidity that pairs perfectly with seafood. Though pale in colour it is a wine of great presence and considerable density and precision.