Albariño: a Taste of Spain from Springfield Estate
Albariño – the favourite Spanish cultivar – has reached South African shores courtesy of the celebrated Robertson Valley estate, Springfield.
Traditionally grown in the northwest parts of Spain and Portugal, Albariño is a full-bodied white varietal with bright citrus acidity, making it the ideal partner to seafood. Consistently producing wines of the highest quality, it comes as no surprise that Springfield Estate would introduce a wine such as Albariño and a chance partnership with the Newton Johnson family set production on the wine in motion.
After encountering the cultivar whilst on holiday in Uruguay, the Bruwer family of Springfield were offered cuttings brought to South Africa by Newton Johnson wines. These finally resulted in a single block vineyard that took three years to thrive. The product of this journey is a well-balanced white wine, redolent of apricot, nectarine and white blossoms, with a pleasingly salty minerality and the trademark citrus acidity that gives Albariño its distinct taste.
Featuring a nostalgic label illustrated by Doug Pywell and designed by Jan van Tonder, Albariño is best paired with traditional Spanish fare – namely the simple cuisine enjoyed along the coast. Prawns or gambas are fried in olive oil, salt and smoked pimento (paprika), whole fish roasted with lemon and a salad of olives, chickpeas and crispy chorizo.
500g large head-on prawns
50ml extra virgin olive oil
4 cloves of garlic, crushed
10ml smoked paprika
Devein the prawns and place into a large bowl. Combine the olive oil, garlic, paprika and salt and pour over the prawns. Leave to marinate for 15 minutes before frying the prawns in a searingly hot pan for 2 to 3 minutes per side. Serve with lemon.
Whole Roasted Fish
1kg fresh fish, cleaned (pictured here is Jacopever, but bream, carpenter or angelfish will do)
A handful of fresh herbs like rosemary or Italian parsley
Extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper
Preheat the oven to 180°C. Rinse the fish or fishes and pat dry with kitchen towel. Slice one of the lemons and juice the other. Season the inside of the belly cavity of the fish with salt and pepper and then stuff with the lemon slices and fresh herbs. Lay the fish out on to a lined baking sheet or dish and drizzle over the lemon juice and some olive oil. Roast for 15 to 25 minutes or until the fish’s flesh is cooked and flakes easily away from the bones. Serve with a simple green salad and extra lemon.