On the pour: Gaba do Xil Godello
Author: Joshua Friend
What is it? This wine offers a snapshot of the talents of one of Spain’s most famous winemakers – Telmo Rodríguez. It’s 100% Godello – a grape native to Galicia, the lush green corner of north-western Spain that is battered by the Atlantic. Vibrant, fresh and mineral, it’s a real joy.
Why’s it different? Telmo Rodríguez is one of Spain’s most sought-after winemakers. While he is most famous for his Rioja and Ribera del Duero wines (Remelluri and Matallana, respectively), Telmo makes wine in various lesser-known regions – including his Gaba do Xil project in Valdeorras, Galicia. Spanish for “valley of gold”, Valdeorras is shielded from the Atlantic by mountains to the west, and is likely the oldest wine region in Galicia. Having almost been wiped out by phylloxera a century ago, Godello is now being rediscovered and replanted. The fruit for this example is grown on steep, terraced vineyards at 500 metres’ altitude. The resulting wine is packed with complexity – spicy citrus notes of orange, lemon and grapefruit are followed by hints of something creamy and thyme, building to a long, mineral finish.
What should I eat with it? This is perfect as an apéritif, but would also make a great picnic wine (should the notorious British weather allow it). Try it with a Caesar salad, or – as our Buying Assistant Lucy Bland suggests – fish tacos (Ottolenghi’s fishcake versions look tempting).
How much? £1 for a taste, £17.50 for a bottle
If you like this, you might like… Telmo’s Mencía from the same range: floral, spicy and supremely elegant.