Posted on January 11th, 2008
With a recipe in mind for my smokies, (smoked haddock in a creamy cheese sauce, see recipe below), I wanted to pick a white wine to go along with it.
I popped into Drinkstore, Stoneybatter for a bit of advice (in addition to a good variety of wines, they also have a wide variety of beers).
I wanted a white wine that could hold it’s own against the strong smoked flavours of the fish, as well as the double cream, scallions and tomatoes that form the basis of the recipe.
Having studied the shelves briefly, I asked the guy in Drink Store (who I’ll keep anonymous – being the tinternet and all) what he would recommend.
He mentioned a Valdamor Albarino (he’s obviously a fan, as it was an Albarino he recommended the last time too).
“The bottle’s too big for the shop, I’ll just nip out back!”
However, in their efforts to appear a little different, the Valdamor producers have put their wine in a bottle that was about 3cm taller than other bottles and too tall to fit on the shelves in Drink Store.
With small niche wine shops wanting to stock an increasing range of wines, space is at a premium.
In this case, instead of standing out from the crowd in the beauty pageant, Valdamar have only succeeded in staying backstage.
If I had been scanning the shelves without seeking advice, I would have missed this Albarino completely. Wonder how many other casual browsers have missed this excellent wine.
Verdict on the Valdamor Albarino, Rias Baixas
Lovely crisp, dry with a nice long finish. Couldn’t get the apricots, peaches mentioned in some of the tasting notes online, but that’s because they’re just spoofers (or my white wine palate hasn’t been trained up yet). I’d score this wine 359 points.
- Year: 2005
- Grape: Albarino
- Wine region: Val de Salnés, Rias Baixas, Galicia, Spain
- ABV: 12.5%
- Available €14.95 from Drinkstore, Stoneybatter and online at uncorked.ie for €15.95 (plus delivery)
And now for those smokies…
- Dice up some smoked haddock (or other smoked fish like Cod or Coley)
- Cut up a tomato into quarters
- Loosely mix into single serving ovenproof bowls
- Sprinkle over dried tarragon and black pepper
- Pour over double cream and a bit of wine
- Sprinkle over a generous helping of grated mature white cheddar cheese
- Grill for about 10 minutes until cheese is melted and nicely browned and bubbly
- Serve as a starter or as a main (with homemade oven chips)