Review: 2009 Martín Códax Albariño

Albariño sits squarely in "that" category of white wines: not yet in the mainstream, but trying really hard.  These wines have long since been discovered by wine geeks and now appear on better BTG lists - and on the lips of trend-setting country club divas who like to live on the edge.

Torrontes, Viognier, Gavi, and a handful of other varieties keep Albariño company here, too.  They're not so esoteric as to only be found buried deep in the "Other" section of creative wine lists.  Hell, today you can find Albariño on grocery store shelves.  And one of the labels you're most likely to see is Martín Códax.

(Full disclosure: This wine was received as a press sample.) Bottled under a screw top, this looks just like Sauvignon Blanc and, oddly, isn't that far off from an aromatic profile.  But where first impressions and, some fun - raucous even - jazz starts.  Unlike whites which advertise sugar and spice and everything nice on the nose, then under deliver on the palate, this one remains true to form, balanced, and smiling.  Far from both serious and mediocre, feed this alternative white some Asturian cuisine and let the Galician sun warm you.

MSRP is $17, but you may find it as low as $12.