Albariño has been known to produce outstanding wines in the region of Galicia, in northwest Spain. We first planted it in our Sonoma Coast vineyard, but that proved too cold for ripening even a cool-climate variety like this. After 4 years, we gave up and grafted the budwood from those vines onto our slightly less cold Russian River Valley estate. And we are very excited that it seems to be thriving in our Don Miguel Vineyard!
The 40% Albariño combines beautifully with the Chardonnay and the wine highlights the best of each variety: floral, fragrant aromas of gardenia and orange blossom coupled with notes of grapefruit, lemon zest and pear. On the palate it is flinty, fresh and crisp, with well balanced acidity and a minerality reminiscent of wet stones — but a bright note of California sunshine. It is an ideal companion for foods such as raw or grilled fish and shellfish, tapas and Asian cuisine. I would recommend serving it at 46°- 48° F.
The Don Miguel Vineyard: Named after the late patriarch of the Torres family, this sustainable vineyard is located in the Green Valley — the coolest, foggiest region of the Russian River Valley, only ten miles from the Pacific. Planted on a southeast-facing slope, in the European-style high density of over 2,000 vines/acre, the yields are low and labor is intensive; but the vines live longer and the grapes acquire better balance and greater concentration, as well as more elegance and finesse.
The Chardonnay grapes were harvested August 25 - 28 and the Albariño on September 2 - 5. They were gently whole-cluster pressed and fermented using our own indigenous yeast. The wine was aged on its lees and bottled in May 2021.