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Santiago Ruiz - Sip into Spring: Textural, Mouth-Watering Whites from a Beacon of Albariño

Santiago Ruiz  - Sip into Spring: Textural, Mouth-Watering Whites from a Beacon of Albariño
We’re delighted to have this grower’s wonderful Albariño back in stock. The Ruiz family’s winemaking roots on Galicia’s Atlantic coast go deep. Ángel Ruiz, the grandfather of the eponymous Santiago, was making wine here in the 1860s and was one of the first people to bottle wines from the region we now know as Rías Baixas. Santiago, however, was the first to market the estate wines, selling his first 20 boxes of Vino de El Rosal to a restaurant in Vigo in 1981. Ruiz was further nicknamed ‘The Father of Albariño’ for the vital role he played in the establishment of the Rías Baixas D.O. in the late 1980s.

Today, the estate is run by Santiago’s daughter Rosa, aided by the winemaking smarts of Luisa Freire. The core vineyard lies at Tomiño in O Rosal—the most southerly of Rías Baixas’ five sub-zones. Situated on the top lip of the river Miño (which marks the border with Portugal), O Rosal enjoys more sunlight hours and a drier climate than Rías Baixas’ other subzones. The vineyards here also benefit from cooling Atlantic breezes and the moderating influence and airflow from the river. Soils in O Rosal are predominantly sandy over granite bedrock, although they vary in texture. This set of natural circumstances favours a style of wine that is both ripe and mineral-laden, with the granitic soils and cool Atlantic nights providing crisp energy and drive.

All the Ruiz vineyards are sustainably farmed and harvesting is carried out by hand. Organic fertiliser is the norm, cover crops between the rows are encouraged and pesticides and herbicides are banned. Santiago Ruiz was also instrumental in introducing stainless steel to the region. To this day, all varieties are vinified separately (using natural yeasts) and undergo a period of lees aging in uncommonly small stainless tanks, which allow for micro-fermentations and concentrated lees contact. We believe they offer great value for money.

The Wines

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