Your Perfect Summer Crush
Follas Novas Albariño 2015
Rias Baixas, Spain
Oh boy was the most recent release at Vintages good. I swore off buying wine for a while after a recent trip to Prince Edward County (more on that soon, promise), but I found myself at the LCBO on Saturday and somehow walked out with 4 bottles after narrowing down my choice from about 10. Normally the releases aren’t this compelling, but this was a goodie.
And this bottle stood out to me the most. I wasn’t sure why. Maybe it was the realization that my cellar is getting dangerously low on summer whites. Maybe it was the fact that it’s a rarely seen Albariño and I just love Albariño. Maybe it was the cute label. I couldn’t explain it, but I just had to buy this bottle.
Then I had to chill and drink it almost immediately.
And it was good. So good. It transported me on waves of citrus and orchard fruit to the Spanish hillsides of Rias Baixas, right near the Atlantic Ocean, where the days are hot and the evenings so joyful.
And of course it was good! It’s made by Paco & Lola – a co-op of winegrowers with over 400 members known for their delicious wines and polka dot labels. (The label on this bottle really should’ve been the tip off.) I love Paco & Lola wines; I buy them almost the second they’re released every time they come around (which clearly explains my must-have-must-drink-nownownow feeling about this wine). So of course the Follas Novas was great.
Follas Novas – new leaf to you and me – is made from 100% Albariño, drawn from 20-40-year-old vineyards, and fermented and aged in stainless steel. The Albariño grape is native to Rias Baixas, in the northwest tip of Spain, where they make crisp and delicious wines that can be surprisingly complex. In fact, 99% of wines from Rias Baixas are whites and 96% of them are Albariño. (I got this little tidbit from the internet!)
So what’s it like? It’s like your perfect summer crush; so cool and intense, mysterious and seductive with a little spritz in its step. It’ll make you hungry, it’ll quench your thirst, and it’ll leave you wondering why you only bought one bottle.
Please, don’t make the same mistake I did: pick up a few, chill ’em down, and enjoy!
Nose: Lemony, white peach, lime zest, minerality
Palate: It’s almost a honeyed peach, with a bit of pineapple; it’s a bit zesty and spritzy – like a yellow fruit salad with lime juice and zest sprinkled over it. As the palate progressed it was like a complete journey through an orchard, taking pit stops at pear and apple town (but not a red apple – a really good apple) towards the end. The wine is really dry with nice acidity, but it’s got a little plushness to the mouthfeel. It actually made me really hungry, even after I was finished everything on my plate. It’s just really delicious and flavourful but refreshing and light at the same time.