On a blistering summer day Txakoli calls to me like a siren song, luring me from my work desk and into an ocean of lovely, debauched delirium.
Txakoli, a slightly effervescent white wine from the Basque Country in Spain, is made from the Hondarrabi Zuri varietal, which is grown exclusively in Northern Spain. The vineyards are planted on dramatic rolling hillsides plummeting toward the Atlantic Ocean, and the wines are salty-briney-lemon-limey goodness. My infatuation with these horribly under-represented wines goes beyond the way they taste, and the gorgeous place they come from; there is simply no other wine whose pairing literally brings the wine itself into context. It's very simple really: Txakoli pairs best with heat, friendship, and a large body of water. They say what grows together goes together.... so why not apply the catchline to location? Obviously we can't all jump on a plane to Donostia every time we want some wine. But, you can plan to have some handy the next time you're poolside. Or beachside. Or, if you too, daydreamed about being Ariel when you were little, pack it in a Swell bottle and sip it in the ocean itself, because this wine is straight mermaid juice.
WINE: 2015 Txomin Etaniz Eugenia. Most Txakoli is only slightly sparkling however some producers make small batches of fully sparkling wine such as this one. The "Eugenia" tastes like salty Champagne; irresistible.
VIBE: 85+° & the ocean. Oysters wouldn't hurt either...
SOURCE: Txomin Etxaniz Winery. Txomin Etxaniz is the arguably the most well respected producer of Txakoli in Basque Country, has been family owned and operated for generations, and has a history dating back to 1649. Their fully sparkling wine is sadly not imported to the States, so I smuggled as much as I could fit in my suitcase. Their delish Txakoli, however can be found at Spanish Table.