Albariño from Rías Baixas: Your Go-To Summer Wine

If you’re looking for a wine that is synonymous with summer, look no further than Albariño from Rías Baixas. This white wine from northwest Spain is dry and refreshing with a delicious mix of fruit, floral and mineral notes. To find the Rías Baixas Denominación de Origen (DO) on a map, look to the upper […]

Xarmant Txakolina 2010

If you’re looking for a wine to get you ready for warmer weather try the 2010 Xarmant Txakolina. It may be a bit intimidating to spell or pronounce but this white wine is extremely easy to drink. Xarmant Txakolina comes from the Basque region of Spain, in the northeast part of the country. The Basque […]

Wine Trends for 2012

Broaden your wine horizons and stay ahead of the curve in 2012. The Amateur Gastronomer predicts what wine trends will be big in the new year. The Return of Merlot The much-maligned Merlot will be making its comeback in 2012! The grape and wine took a hit after the 2004 release of the movie “Sideways,” […]

AG Pick: Paco & Lola Albarino 2009

There’s something about Albariño that always puts me in a good mood.  Maybe it’s because I drink Albariño with fun foods like raw oysters and sushi, or that it’s one of my go-to wines on a warm and sunny day. Though the weather may not be cooperating, I’m ready for springtime — and enjoying a […]

AG Pick: Nora da Neve Albarino 2005

I think I have found my favorite Albariño.  Of the Albariños I’ve tasted recently, the Nora da Neve stood out as being on another level.  One reason for its delicious taste?  Oak. Haven’t tried an oaked Albariño before?  That’s not surprising.  Hardly any winemakers in Spain use oak with Albariño for fear it will dominate […]

A Taste of Portugal’s Native Grapes

With names like Trajadura, Loureiro, Trincadeira, Alicante Bouschet and Touriga Nacional, the grapes of Portugal don’t exactly roll off your tongue.  Nor do they have the recognition of a Cabernet Sauvignon or Chardonnay.  But with more than 200 indigenous varietals, Portugal’s wines are definitely exciting to explore. For a great introduction to Portugal’s wines, I […]