2008 Orballo Albariño Rías Baixas, Galicia, Spain
This is the second Albariño I’ve reviewed on CorkEnvy (see the first one here). The Rib and I love Albariños. Love them. This is a great varietal that is appropriate with nothing more than you and your gentleman (or lady) lover and a blanket on the cool grass under a large oak tree on a warm summer evening; it also pairs well with chicken and seafood dishes. And it’s a bit different. And, choosing an Albariño to serve as a white selection (vice Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, or Pinot Grigio) will make you look like you know your way around wine. That’s a “win-win-win,” to quote Michael Scott.
We enjoyed the Orballo because our favorite Albariño wasn’t yet (back) in stock at our local shop. I’m glad we were forced to try something different (we were ‘forced’ so much that we have had two bottles of this one already!). That said, I now have two bottles of our go-to Albariño, so look for a write-up on that one before summer’s end.
On the sniffer, the Orballo showed nice pineapple along with some lemon notes and a slight orange peel. The first bottle took us two days to take down (a rarity) and I got a little nuttiness on the nose the second day.
The palate brought the pineapple, even though it was a bit tart (almost like a not-quite-ripe pineapple). There were also some decent lemon notes and a little of the aforementioned nuttiness (almond, maybe?). On the second day (of the first bottle), I picked up a little grapefruit in there, too. The Orballo presented almost a slight effervescence. The acid on this one is fairly big, but it holds the tart citrus notes together well and would allow the wine to hold up to a variety of food pairings (the first bottle we opened was paired with my own Tex-Mex inspired tequila-lime chicken).
At $22, this is a much better showing than the Bodegas Couto I wrote about previously. In my opinion, the Orballo is closer to what an Albariño should be and is more worth the selling price than the Couto. That said, our favorite Albariño is priced squarely between the two and, well—is a favorite. Don’t hesitate to give the Orballo a try, though. It’ll be a great new find if your experience with whites has been limited to Chardonnays, Sauvignon Blancs, or Pinot Grigios.
Cheers from the Corkpit,