In a nutshell: A richly fruit laden Rias Baixas from North Western Spain.
The lowdown: This is blended from the grapes of two vineyards, one at 300m elevation andf the other close to sea level and the contrasting characteristics of each marry particularly well. Ripe aromatics with layers of peach, floral and honeyed notes mingle with mountain herbs and a sweeter mandarin skin and apple note. It's generous on the palate with a weighty leesy texture, ripe fruit and minerality all balanced by a refreshing smack of acidity.
When to drink: A natural partner to seafood, but try also with baked goats cheese.
This Rias Baixas pioneer was founded in 1985 and has made its name over the past two decades for producing classically-styled, great quality, Albariño.There are five sub-regions in Rias Baixas. Bodegas La Val are based in Condado do Tea - away from the coast and just over the Portuguese border.
In 2003 they built a brand new winery in Arantei, over-looking the Miño river, and equipped with the most modern winemaking technology. Vines are around thirty years old, and are grown on the Pergola system, as is typical in the region. This aids ventilation of the grapes, protecting them from excess humidity and mositure.
All fruit is hand-harvested. With over 90 hectares of vineyard across the region, they are one of the largest vineyard owners in Rìas Baixas, and all their wines are produced from their own fruit. As a result they are one of the most reliable sources of good quality, moderately-priced Albariño.