Tangent Edna Valley Albariño ($12)
This week's wine is an Albariño (Ahi-bah-REE-nyoh) from California's Edna Valley. This grape is indigenous to northwestern Spain where it thrives in the cool western climate. California's Edna Valley too has the cool nights and warm days necessary to grow great Albariño. This light to medium bodied wine is crisp with bright acidity and has delicate flavors of mandarin orange and tangerine peel. Unique characteristics of wines from this grape include a very subtle saline flavor (i.e., salty) and a smooth, slippery, almost oily, mouth-feel. It does sound that there's a lot going on in this wine, but it is actually a very crisp and refreshing wine that goes with lot of foods, especially fish.
One additional note on this grape. In Portugal, this is called Alvarinho (Ahi-vah-REE-nyoh) and is used to make that country's famous white wine, Vinho Verde.