Wrong Grapes Again!


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You will be surprised how often this happens and how few times it gets caught or reported (probably)? Albarino is a nice grape but not a noble grape to cry over.  If it was sold in Spain to Australia, the end product cannot be that big a deal.  If nothing else, this gets them some free press.  They had plenty of red vines in South America that turned out not to be what expected.  And remember the good old California grape Gamay Beaujolais which turned out to be a Pinot Noir clone?  Oh well, they make a lot of mistakes.  At least, they publicized it here to be honest and reduce the risk of its sales (by coincidence of course).

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I can’t believe it’s not Albariño!

from Dr Vino's wine blog by Dr. Vino

albarino1Down under, thousands of liters of a certain white wine are resting in tanks right now. The only trouble is that nobody’s sure what to call it once it’s bottled.

In the 1980s, the Australian research institute CSIRO imported what they thought were Albariño vines from Spain. Eventually, market demand led to propagation of the vines; about 70 producers make it today.

But a couple of years ago Jean-Michel Boursiquot, a expert vine identifier (who knew?) from the University of Montpellier, spotted the vine thought to be Albariño and suggested that it was, in fact, the savagnin blanc grape often found in the Jura region of France (who in Australia will be the first to make it in an oxidative, vin juane style?). The Australian authorities confirmed this earlier this year, after the harvest but before bottling. Thus the producers can no longer call it Albariño and there’s no consensus on whether they should adopt the Savagnin Blanc labeling or even try Traminer, it’s genetic twin. But time is ticking as bottling time approaches.

Any thoughts? Here were some suggestions that came up in our seminar this afternoon:
* Albari-not
* The grape formerly known as Albariño (actually a symbol)
* I can’t believe it’s not Albariño! (Credit goes to Max Allen)

Further reading: “Albariño and Savagnin, Mencía and Jaen” [Jancisrobinson.com]

http://www.drvino.com/2009/06/03/albarino-savagnin-australia-grape/

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