Albariño is a wine for all seasons, of course, but right now, as we melt on through the proverbial dog days of summer, it seems particularly perfect. Few other wines possess such a pitch-perfect balance of refreshment, complexity, and food-friendliness...and generally at very reasonable prices.
The real epicenter for great Albariño is up in North Western Spain’s Galicia--and, in particular, Rías Baixas. The best Albariños from here tend to offer wonderful fruit notes alongside minerality and the kind of acidity that allows them to work with everything from fresh seafood to lighter veal dishes. They can even handle spicy food with ease.
Marqués de Cáceres Albariño “Deusa Nai” 2010, Rías Baixas
This wine is a beautiful example of the more “serious” side of Albariño. All the typical characteristics are there--apricot, peach, and a hint of minerality, as well as an intriguing spiciness--but the focus of this bottling is the acidity, which is amped up to a level that can easily counter even the hottest, most humid day. By the pool or at the dinner table, it’s a steal at less than $20.