13/07/2014 – Gaintza, Txakoli 2013

Gaintza, Txakoli 2013, Spain
Txakoli? There’s every chance the name of this Spanish wine will be unfamiliar – unless, that is, you are a regular visitor to Spain’s Basque country. The traditional style of these wines – always dry and licked by the tang of the sea – is to have a slight spritz on the tongue. They are not sparkling wines as such, but have a delicate effervescence that adds to their super-bright, punchy and vivacious appeal. And that’s certainly true of this blend of the local Hondarrabi Zuri and Beltza, plus some Gros Manseng. It bursts with gloriously fresh lemon and fresh-cut apple aromas. There is a touch of green herbs, of dill perhaps, but this is all about that stunning freshness. There is that gentle fizz on the tongue, but then the acidity and the nervous energy of the wine streaks through, edged by salty minerals, that pure zesty lemon and loads of clean apple crispness. Txakoli is heaven-sent when drunk with seafood and shellfish, and though the abundant freshness and dry acidity might not be for everyone, it is lip-smacking, fantastically bracing stuff. Watch the video for a map, more information and food-matching ideas. Around £11.99 from independent merchants including Corks of Cotham and The Fine Wine co., but see all stockists on wine-searcher.