It was no surprise that one of the top expressions of Northwest Albariño, and one of its largest productions, also ranked among the best in this tasting. A key component is the role that Evergreen Vineyard in the Ancient Lakes of Columbia Valley has historically played in Victor Palencia’s work as an ambassador of this Spanish grape. (His smaller bottling of Albariño is under the El Viñador reserve tier, which pays tribute to his father.) Here’s a very fruit-forward example, leading with white peach and tree-ripened Red Delicious as the finish of Key lime soda arrives in a timely fashion to handle the residual sugar — which ticks just below 1%. This ranks among the most approachable for those new to Albariño and is likely the most available of this tasting. “It’s distinctive, and the hint of RS works pretty well,” one judge said.
Rating: Outstanding! Gold medal — 91 points
Production: 1,000 cases