Avelada Reserva da Familia Minho Alvarinho 2016 $36

While most imported albariño we see in NZ comes from Spain’s Rias Baixas region, fans of the grape will be chuffed to know that there are some right rumpty Portuguese versions around also. Using fruit from Minho, in the Vinho Verde region, Aveleda ferment it in a combo of large oak barrels and stainless steel […]

Terras Gauda Rías Baixas O Rosal 2016 $34.95 (4.5 stars)

Made from a blend of albariño, caino and loureiro grapes, this kick-in-the-chops Spanish white made in the Rías Baixas (ree-ass bye-sass) tradition put me firmly in my happy place. I love the crash of lemon blossom, lime zest and white peach across the palate, the smash of rain-on-hot-rocks minerality and the gentle, tastebud exfoliating character […]

Astrolabe Sleepers Vineyard Marlborough Albariño 2016 $25 (4 stars)

Grown on a limestone-laden block WAY south in Kekerengu by Albarino-obsessives Chris and Lynne Wilson, this local version of a Spanish favourite has ‘Spring 2018’ written all over it. Clean white peach, lemon blossom, a dusting of almond and a long, soft, citrus-stacked finish will make you feel like you’ve just stepped out of a […]

Aronui Single Vineyard Nelson Albariño 2016 $22.45 (4 stars)

The name ‘Aronui’ derives from ancient Māori mythology about the pursuit of knowledge and after a glass or two, you’ll definitely be schooled up on albariño’s awesomeness. Widely planted in northwest Spain and Portugal, it’s recognised as their best and most fashionable white grape – similar to sauvignon blanc for us I guess. I love […]

Maison Noire Hawke’s Bay Albarino 2016 $22 (3.5 stars)

Guillaume Thomas & Esther Smith are two of the nicest new wine growers I’ve had the pleasure of meeting. They’re young, ultra-industrious and always gun for the best.  They’ve planted a tiny little vineyard high up on the Waimarama Road and turn out stunning examples of wine like this local incarnation of the spanish classic. […]

Rod McDonald Wines One Off Gisborne Albariño 2015 $23 ★★★★

There’s a whiff of gunflint and smashed river rocks, watercress, lemongrass and salty seabreeze happening on the nose, followed by a tsunami of steely acidity, bony minerality and crunchy green apple characters.  There’s a smoky tone to the finish which is long and zesty and makes this wine truly magical with lemon and parmesan risotto. […]

Coopers Creek Bell Ringer Gisborne Albarino 2015 $22 ★★★★½

Winemaker Simon Nunns has crafted a distinctly limey, lipsmackingly dry and intensely mineral-driven albariño from Gisborne’s Bell vineyard.  It’s got real presence and poise and truckloads of tangy stonefruit notes, yet it’s beautifully balanced and delicate at the same time.  Sensational with pan seared groper steaks drizzled with lemon. www.cooperscreek.co.nz

Left Field Gisborne Albariño 2015 $17.99 ★★★★

Attractive aromas of white nectarine, crushed shells, hints of brine and roadside daisies.  The acidity is piercing and devastatingly dry (in a good way).  It’s a wine that’ll kickstart even the most jaded of tastebuds and have them crying out for more tastes and flavours.  Ultra-cleansing stonefruit, hints of lemon lift it even further on […]

Matawhero Gisborne Albarino 2014 $25 ★★★½

While it’s bold and golden in the glass, you’ll need to dig deep in the nose department.  But it’s worth the effort because you’ll uncover subtle lemon verbena, white nectarine and wild flowers, while on the palate it’s seriously, palate-exfoliatingly dry.  Matawhero’s owners, Kirsten and Richard Searle, are clearly fans of the variety, and this […]

Villa Maria Cellar Selection Gisborne Albariño 2015 $17.99 ★★★★

I really like this wine because it’s bracingly fresh and shows classic white flesh peach, nectarine and lemony characters alongside a squeak of apricot stone, crushed shells, hints of salt and has a vibrant, racy finish.  Very tangy and fresh and has a long, mineral-edged finish. www.villamaria.co.nz

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