Another summer white… Martin Codax Albarino

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What’s Albarino, you may ask.  Only one of the most crisp and delicious whites EVER!  Very food friendly.  Very hot-weather friendly.  You could just say this is a friendly and pleasant wine. And I suppose I just did.

Albarino is known as a Spanish grape, but is also grown in Portugal- where they spell it Alvarinho, and sometimes put in it Vinho Verde.  It’s known for it’s somewhat intense, distinctive nose- you could say it’s a little eager to get to know you.  The aromas of ripe lemon, green apples and some herby-ness jump out of the glass.  Color-wise, it’s a really bright, almost sparkly yellow, so it definitely gets your attention.  It’s happy to be alive!

I can think of sooo many things that this wine would taste good with- seafood would probably be the best bet.  A seafood bouillabaise, herb-fried or grilled calamari… any kind of nice white fish like grouper or snapper with a white wine & butter sauce… mmm.  Perfect.  You could even get away with a light, light cream sauce with herbs, pasta, shrimp, and whatever else you want to throw in there.  A pungent cheese like Goat or Brie would be nice, too.

It was given 90 points by Wine Enthusiast! Nothing better than an inexpenive 90-point wine, in my book.  I could talk about how good it is ’til I’m blue in the face, but once y’all see that 90pt rating, you’ll be all over it.  I know you will.  We have this wine at Solstice as a feature right now which means you can drink it on a Monday or Tuesday for (gasp!) $16!  Any other night of the week it will cost you $32 a bottle.   UNLESS you read your Solstice email from yesterday and print out the little goodie that’s in it!  *hint hint*

And a quick side note- I was informed the day after my Opala Vinho Verde post that there is some kind of problem with the distributor being out of the country (yawn) and it has not come in on schedule.  My blood boiled just a bit, because I would never want to pump y’all up to try a wine, only to be told you couldn’t have it.  Horrible!  From now on, I will stick with wines that are physically HERE, or I will send you to the Gourmet Shop to see my fellow redhead, Bryan.  Thanks for reading!

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First Post- Opala Vinho Verde!

Hello everyone!  This is my first official Wine Snob blog entry.  For those of you who know me,  you probably understand the satirical tone behind the title “Wine Snob,” but if you don’t, let me explain: I have racked my brain for weeks trying to think of a title that was witty, creative, original, and conveyed that the purpose of this blog is to undercut Wine Snobbery with some good old fashioned BARGAINS and just plain deliciousness.

I thought and thought.  I asked everyone I knew.  I bothered people about it.  I got annoyed when people gave me dumb title ideas.  Katie-whine-oh?  No.  Glass-Half-Full?  Too unoriginal.  Oh-lingering-Wine?  Um.. NO.  Thanks, Ricky.  You are good for nothing.

So, The Wine Snob it is.  It’s not the best, but it’s to-the-point.  My goal will be to pick at least one wine a week and write a nice little succinct and humorous blurb about it.  I will definintely focus on value- but my objective will not necessarily be to have a wine that costs less than 10 or 15 dollars, but maybe a wine that costs $40 and TASTES like it costs $100!  What is better then THAT?!  Nothing.  I cannot hide my bias for wines that are available at Mr. Friendly’s, Cellar on Greene, or Solstice, but don’t hate me because of it.  Please.

So, with all that as a lead-in, allow me to introduce my first wine pick- Opala Vinho Verde!  Some of you may have sampled this at last weekend’s wine sale, or since then at Cellar where we poured it by-the-glass for a few days until-literally- it was GONE in a few days.  But thankfully, we have more on the way!!  EVERYONE, I do mean everyone, who has tasted this wine has raved about it.

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Simply put, this is the absolute BEST summer wine you can ever imagine.  You could drink it by the pool.  You could drink it while you mow the lawn.  Or after… maybe that would be safer.  Drink it on a porch.  Take it to the river or the lake.  I didn’t even know it was possible for a wine to be thirst-quenching, but it IS.  It SO is.  It is spritely, delicate, a little effervescent, light, low in alcohol (9%), with hints of citrus, apples, pears and a lively finish.  This wine is just FUN.  And did I mention that it is $10 a BOTTLE?!  Yes, it’s true.  You just died and went to heaven.

Speaking of heaven, the bottle even looks like heaven.  It’s pretty and floral and ephemeral and sort of dreamy.  I am trying to think of a celebrity to compare this wine to…. Reese Witherspoon!  Likeable, cute, petite, sort of dainty, but not annoying and cheesy like some little blonde petite celebrities.  Of which there are plenty.  Reese has substance, and so does Opala.

Let me add a little background info on Vinho Verde, for anyone who’s interested-  It’s from Portugal, and it means “Green Wine”, the “green” referring to the fact that the grapes are picked young, and it’s meant to be consumed very young as well.  So don’t buy it for your Mom if you think she’s bound to try to save it for a special occasion.  Bad idea.  It’s made out of a bunch of Portugese grapes you’ve never heard of and won’t remember.  And it’s delicious.  In my world, that’s all you need to know.

I hope everyone got a kick out of my first entry!  Stop in to Cellar on Greene and ask for a taste anytime Tuesday-Saturday.  If you mention that I sent you… there’s no tellin’ what will happen, but you will still get to taste the wine… and then some.  And then take a bottle home and park yourself on the porch for the rest of the evening.  I’ll be doing the same.  Cheers!