Today marks the opening of International Albariño Days, a five day series of global festivities surrounding this fun, yet mysterious grape!
And to celebrate, we offer 10 fun facts about the grape you should be enjoying sometime between now and next Wednesday:
- Albariño is mostly grown in the Rias Baixas region of Spain, with 90%+ of the vineyard acres in the region devoted to it.
- Due to the coastal climate, the grape is grown on trellis systems so the grapes never come in contact with the ground, helping to avoid disease and rot that can occur in such a moist environment.
- Shrouded in mystery and mythology, and once thought to be a clone or hybrid of Riesling, it is still unknown the exact origins of the grape and how exactly it found its home in the warm, wet region of Rias Baixas, Spain.
- The grape’s name is rooted in the Latin albus – meaning “white”.
- Albariño is noted for its botanical aromas and citrus undertones – considered similar (and for fans of) Gewürztraminer and Viognier.
- The fun, youthful, and effervescent Vinho Verdes of Portugal use ‘Alvarinho’ (same grape) in their blends, generally sought after for their lower alcohol content (usually clocking in around 8.5% ABV).
- Albariño is sought after not only for its expressions and origins, but for its price point (generally falling between $10-20 in most wine shops).
- Albariño is the perfect companion for seafood. In Spain, it’s not uncommon to enjoy it alongside octopus.
- Albariño is fermented and aged in stainless steel tanks, allowing the true expression of the grape to shine, and it’s generally released within a year of harvest as it’s best enjoyed young and expressive.
- Albariño is seen as the sole premier white grape from Spain, a country more internationally known for their red wines.
So go on and grab yourself a bottle of Albariño this week to celebrate alongside our team.