Terras Gauda, Rias Baixas, Spain

Albarino vines at Terras Gauda

Albarino vines at Terras Gauda

Name: Bodegas Terras Gauda
Location: O Rosal, Rias Baixas
Website: www.terrasgauda. com

Best known for: caiño blanco & albariño blends
Available from The Wine Station: Abadia de San Campio 2010, O Rosal 2009, La Mar 2010,

What is particularly striking about the area of O Rosal which is the southern most region within Rías Baixas bordering Portugal & the Atlantic Ocean, is the landscape; you would you swear you were in Australia; country Vic perhaps with its gum trees & pine plantations. Only the view of terraced vineyards, the high trained pergola vine systems & great swathes of water suggest you might be elsewhere.
Rias Baixas is one of 77 DO regions within Spain,being granted DO status in 1986. While there is a long history of winemaking in the area most vineyards were planted to produce wine for personal consumption & usually located next door to homes. Hence there were many very small vineyards that made producing consistent wine difficult. Aware of the limitations of many small plots, a group of college friends decided to build a vineyard & winery dedicated to producing the local albariño grape. In 1989 Terras Gauda was born. Terras Gauda seems to be the odd one out in Rias Baixas – their soils are less acidic or brackish than the rest of the region, they have schist and clay soils (while everyone else has granitic), they do not use the pergola system for their vines, opting instead for a more open, vertical trellising system, they have isolated a wild yeast to remove the undesirable banana flavour many albariño have. The list goes on!