November 05, 2013
AEC Ambassador Brian Freedman finished up his 2013 U.S. tour last month, but there's still more to come! Check out his reflections on stop #3, and don't miss his blogs about stops in Philadelphia and Miami.
Venturing out to San Francisco for any wine-related purpose is, to oenophiles and anyone with even a passing respect for the grape and all it can do, something of a religious experience. Its proximity to two of the greatest wine regions in America make it a center of gravity for all things vinous, and its abundance of world-class restaurants, each seemingly filled to the rafters with bottles both familiar and new, make any visit there an experience that sets the liver a-quake.
So when we headed out west for the third stop of the Albariño Explorers Club tour, we knew we were in for a treat.
October 22, 2013
by La Vonda WilliamsTasked with finding great food pairings for Albariño, I’d decided pretty quickly that lobster rolls would be a delicious match. Seafood is the most common pairing for
coastal white wine growing regions, such as Rías Baixas D.O. Swept with cool Atlantic breezes and humidity, this region typically produces wines with significant acidity, citrus aromas and flavors, and sometimes a touch of salinity.
A few friends and I headed to my favorite Fort Greene Brooklyn restaurant, Prospect. In addition to my lobster, the wine director recommended an outstanding tasting menu. Both the wine and the food surpassed all expectations. Instead of light, crisp wines (like the Vinho Verde of neighboring Portugal also made with the same grapes), several of the Albariños had enough body, texture, and flavor to pair well with heavier proteins like veal, pork and foie gras.
Despite their similar heritage – all 100% Albariño, and 3 of them from the same sub-region of Val do Salnés – these wines were quite distinct:
The favorite food wine - ’12 Condes de Albarei – citrus aromas, with lemon flavors, minerality, phenolic character (giving weight and some bitterness), very balanced and integrated acid, silky/creamy texture, medium bodied.
The favorite sipping wine - ’12 Mar de Frades –strong floral and citrus fragrances, lemon, grapefruit and faint peach on the palate with medium body and a creamy texture, some phenolic flavors and bright acidity.
The most fruit in a glass - ’12 Alvinte – pronounced pear flavor, slightly honeyed and piercing acidity, lighter bodied.
The most accessible wine - ’11 Paco & Lola –more flavor than aroma, also citrusy/lemony flavors on the palate, with white peach aromas on the finish, pronounced acidity, slightest hint of spritz, light bodied.
The wine line-up for the evening
The other tasters included a wine novice, a cookbook author/foodie, and the restaurant’s wine director.