White Delights From Spain

By Robert Parker

Spain produces some of the world's crispest, most refreshing, and easiest-drinking dry white wines. They're all pure expressions of their vineyards and microclimates, and the best of them never see a day in oak. Almost all are perfect accompaniments to the light seafood and poultry dishes you enjoy this time of year. Best of all, they provide a fine bottle for the money.

Bodegas Nekeas 2006 Vega Sindoa Viura-Chardonnay

88 points. Light gold in color, it offers up an attractive nose with notes of mineral, baked apple, and honey. Supple on the palate with gobs of flavor, this medium-bodied wine is nicely balanced and refreshing, and is a great value, too. $8

Bodegas Naveran non-vintage Cava Brut Reserva

89 points. This sparkling white offers citrus and melon aromas, persistent small bubbles, dry, fruity flavors, and a surprisingly long, clean finish. Drink it over the next 12 to 18 months. $12

Adegas Gran Vinum 2005 Albariño Nessa

86 points. With scents and flavors of citrus and honey, this medium-bodied wine has good concentration, excellent balance, and a great price. $12

Bodegas y Viñedos 2005 Dos Victorias Jose Pariente

89 points. This straw-colored wine displays lovely floral and tropical aromas. The elegant effort has ripe fruit, good balance, medium body, and a crisp, lengthy finish. Enjoy it over the next 12 to 18 months. $17

Adegas Morgadio 2005 Morgadio Albariño

90 points. An intense perfume of honey, spring flowers, and peach comes from this straw-colored wine. On the palate, it exhibits excellent ripeness, concentration, a supple texture, and enough weight to accompany richly sauced fish courses and white meats. $18

Lusco do Miño 2005 Albariño

91 points. The light gold-colored wine offers an expressive perfume of slate, minerals, honeysuckle, pear, and apricot. There is good underlying acidity, a rich feel on the palate, and a long, dry, fruity finish. $20

Finca de Arantei 2005 Albariño

90 points. The wine displays floral and mineral aromas reminiscent of a top Alsatian riesling, but with more weight. There are lots of green apple, pear, and honey flavors, with good acidity and a long, fruity finish. $20

Itsas Mendi 2005 Txakoli

89 points. From the Basque country, this white is made from hondarrabi zuri, an indigenous grape. Straw in color, the wine has notes of fresh herbs, crushed flowers, and honey. It is ripe and refreshing. Drink it over the next year. $20

Bodegas Naia 2005 Naiades

91 points. The barrel-fermented cuvée comes from one parcel of 80- to 100-year-old verdejo vines. Light gold in color, it exhibits a perfume of vanilla spice, lemon-lime, and honeysuckle. This is a medium-bodied wine with an intense entry, mouth-filling fruit, and excellent balance. Enjoy it over the next 12 to 18 months. $23.

Wines rated from 96-100 are extraordinary; 90-95, excellent; 80-89, above average to very good.

Robert Parker is the world's most influential wine critic. Visit www.eRobertParker.com to see tens of thousands of tasting notes, buy his books, or subscribe to his newsletter, The Wine Advocate.

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