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 Filed as : Wine of the WeekWine Recommendations

Checking Out Txakoli

Aug 3, 2011
Checking Out Txakoli
An almost unpronounceable wine is hot-among adventurous wine drinkers.

txakoliIf you think Txakoli (pronounced chock-o-LEE) is another Mayan-inspired chocolate, that’s okay. Until the 1980’s, it hadn’t really been exported from the Basque region in Spain where it is the leading white wine. But not anymore. Authentic Spanish restaurants and bars – especially Bar Basque – are beginning to pour Txakoli in its traditional style: with the bottle held high above the glass, creating something like a waterfall. (Trust us. This isn’t something to try at home).

The word txakoli is native Basque and completely obscure except for the “oli” ending which denotes a liquid. Made from the indigenous grape hondarribi zuri, it is white, slightly sparkling and always consumed when it’s young and fresh. There are strong Atlantic influences in the flavor of the wine-- flavors evocative of seashells and the ocean. And needless to say, the wine has strong, crisp acidity. You can find a bottle here.

If you’re having a hard time finding Txakoli near you, Spanish albariño is similar in its briney (sea shell) quality and Greek assyrtiko shares the same acidity. All three would make racy companions for a platter of grilled shrimp drizzled with extra virgin olive oil.

What's another unique white that you love? Tell us about it below.

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