On Monday 17th February the WING group met to taste Spanish Whites courtesy of Yvonne. Here are my notes:

La Miranda de Seastilla Garnacha Blanca 2012 – 13.5% (Cambridge Wine Merchants £11)
Honeysuckle and apple notes, reminiscent of Chenin Blanc, and underneath that an oaky line, followed by mango. Citric acidity, and citrus-pith on the palate, a warm (alcohol?) prickle too. As it open there is more creaminess – from the oak, and later still as the wine warms the oak dominates…..

Bioca Godello 2012 – 13.5% (CWM £11)
Pears on the nose, some limey citrus and floral hints, but the pears soon become pear-drop confectionery. The palate is peaches and pears too, with spicy, gingerish hints. Long acidity and quite refreshing, later the pear-drop element becomes a bit tiring.

El Rescatado Albarín Tierra de Leon 2013 – 13% (Majestic £13)
Albarín is an old variety, unrelated to Alborino, which is now mostly planted in Asturias. This has a recessed nose, but quite a lots of flavours appearing as hints: herbs, pears, a floral note. The palate has sweet, vaguely peachy, fruit well balanced with a long lasting warm acidity, quite subtle and would do well with food.

Lagar de Bouza Albariño 2012 – 13% (CWM £11)
Although, it’s sometimes said to be related to Riesling, (an idea produced by its combination of floral notes, soft fruit and high acidity coupled with the story of it being brought to Galicia by German monks), Albariño is, in fact, completely unrelated. It turns out to be an ancient grape originated right on the Portuguese/Galician border. This example has a slightly volatile nose with a herby twist and some fruit. The palate has good acidity and a mineral note that – by itself – is reminiscent of the slate notes in some Mosel Riesling. Satisfyingly integrated and balanced and not as “big” as some examples.

Auzells Costers Del Segre 2012 – 12.5% (Wine Society £10)
This is a blend of Macabeu, Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Riesling, Albariño, Müller Thurgau & Muscat (in that order)! I couldn’t get exact figures for this vintage but, judging by previous assemblages, this will be mostly the first 3 listed (perhaps 35%, 25%, 20%). This has quite an oily nose and a “gluey” hint reminiscent of Cava, also herbs – maybe even Fennel. The palate is oily too, the wine is rich and has quite a well-made, international style. I found the palate less interesting than the nose.

Marques de Caceres Rioja Blanco 2012 – (Majestic? £9)
Made from Viura, this is rather bland, ok but little character – a Spanish version of Pinot Grigio!?

Marques de Caceres “Antea” Barrel Aged Rioja Blanco 2011 – 13% (Majestic £12)
Viura too, and much better, showing wood tones – of course – and fenugreek, gluey/resin notes. The palate is rich, oak and a sharpish fruit (quince?) and a grapefruit acidity. Much better balanced and some interest, though lacking the great complexity of long aged oxidized example (our minds turned to Marques de Murrieta Y Gay) but a lot of character.

The early wines dropped out of balance after a short time, a sign that they need drinking quickly. While the last wine was interesting, the Albarín and the Albariño, seemed the best all round.

Thanks so much to Yvonne.