By Robert Parker
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Spanish wines are little-known in the U.S., which helps to explain why the prices are low given the quality of the product. If you're not familiar with them, it's time give them a try. Do you enjoy crisp white wines? Then pick up a bottle of albariño or verdejo. For festive occasions, pop the cork on a bottle of cava, Spain's sparkling wine. What about Spain's fabulous red wines? That's next week's column.
Bodegas Nekeas 2005 Vega Sindoa Viura Chardonnay 87 points.
Bodegas Nekeas 2005 Vega Sindoa Viura Chardonnay
87 points.Fermented in stainless steel tanks, this blend (70% viura, 30% chardonnay) is an amazing effort. Crisp, elegant, and dry, with a fragrant, viognier-like bouquet, it offers abundant quantities of tropical fruits (pineapples), medium body, fresh, pure flavors, and a zesty finish. Drink over the next 8 to 12 months. $7
Telmo Rodríguez 2005 Rueda Basa Blanco 87 points.
Telmo Rodríguez 2005 Rueda Basa Blanco
87 points.Light-bodied and dry, this wine mimics a New Zealand sauvignon blanc. Completely fermented and aged in stainless steel tanks, this aromatic blend of sauvignon blanc, viura, and verdejo reveals abundant fruit, beautiful crispness, and a zesty personality. Enjoy it over the next 12 months. $10
Mont-Marcal 2001 Cava Brut Reserva 88 points.
Mont-Marcal 2001 Cava Brut Reserva
88 points.A light-straw-colored, light-bodied sparkler that has a good, frothy effervescence. It also has attractive pear and tropical fruit characteristics and a dry, soft finish. Drink it over the next 12 to 18 months. $12
Burgans 2005 Albariño Rías Baixas 88 points.
Burgans 2005 Albariño Rías Baixas
88 points.With a medium body as well as wonderfully crisp orange marmalade, mineral, and flowery tropical fruit notes, this wine makes an ideal accompaniment for seafood and shellfish dishes. $12
Bodegas Naia 2005 Naia 88 points.
Bodegas Naia 2005 Naia
88 points.This tank-fermented and aged verdejo offers loads of honeysuckle, lemon zest, and orange-rind traits in a crisp, medium-bodied, surprisingly textured yet elegant, fresh style. Drink it in 12 to 18 months. $13
Gramona Gessamí 2004 90 points.
Gramona Gessamí 2004
90 points.An intriguing blend of 60% muscat de Alexandria, 30% sauvignon blanc, and 10% muscat de Fontignac. Exotic waxy notes intermixed with notions of rose water, acacia flowers, and minerals jump from the glass of this medium-bodied white. It possesses a fruity, dry, intense, pure, spicy personality. The word gessamí originates from the Hebrew word for jasmine, but I did not detect that characteristic in the wine. Drink it over the next year. $13
Cava Avinyó nonvintage Brut Reserva 89 points.
Cava Avinyó nonvintage Brut Reserva
89 points.A fruity, soft, medium-bodied sparkler with a frothy effervescence as well as hints of pear, honey, and peach. Enjoy it over the next 1 to 2 years. 15
Wines rated from 96-100 are extraordinary; 90-95, excellent; 80-89, above average to very good.
Visit www.eRobertParker.com for the Internet's most active wine bulletin board, tens of thousands of tasting notes, or to order his recent book, The World's Greatest Wine Estates: A Modern Perspective. You can also subscribe to Parker's newsletter, The Wine Advocate. Request a sample copy at: The Wine Advocate, P.O. Box 311, Monkton, MD 21111