Scientists Crack Mystery Of How Spain's Prized Albario Wine Came To Be

Posted: Aug 24, 2020

Myths, mysteries and legends surround the origin of albariño, widely regarded as Spain’s finest white wine, and how the grape from which it derives wound up in the far north-west of the country.

Now scientists at a research institute in Galicia have debunked theories that it originates in the Rhine valley or was brought by French Cistercian monks on pilgrimage from Cluny in the 12th century.

The grape, they said, is native to the region and albariño wine has been produced there since Roman times.

“We were already sure it didn’t come from the Rhine,” said Carmen Martínez, the head of viticulture at the biological research centre in Pontevedra. “Studies show that there is nothing like it in the Rhine valley, not even under another name.”

Martínez said they believed the grape derives from a woodland vine that over the years became domesticated. “There are no examples of albariño vines hundreds of years old anywhere in the world except Galicia,” she said.

By Stephen Burgen
Source and Complete Article: The Guardian
August 21, 2020

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