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Vail wines: Try an unfamiliar white this summer

Jarrett OsbornVail, CO Colorado

VAIL, Colorado -Spain, like most European wine-producing countries, has many grapes unknown outside its borders. Certainly, here in the U.S., chardonnay rules the fine white wine category, with sauvignon blanc and Pinot Grigio making up the bulk of the difference. This summer, try something new, something unknown, but with familiar flavors and aromas.The 2007 Bodegas Campante Versatus is this wine, a blend of four white grapes in equal proportion: Treixadura, Palomino, Godello, and Torrontes. These four grapes are indigenous to Ribeiro, a tiny region in northwest Spain (not to be confused with Ribeira del Duero, in north-central Spain, known for big red wines.) Winemaker Maria Trinidad Gonzalez Lamelas makes the wine in stainless steel tanks, retaining the crisp fresh flavors of the grapes.The aroma is clean and crisp, with lime, melon and rose petals leading the way. The light flavors are the same, with added dry lime, white grape and a lovely mineral streak kicking in on the finish. The Versatus is perfect for raw oysters or clams, goat cheese and light fish dishes.In the 1940s, the Prado family sold their bulk wine in many of the local towns in Ribeiro. Now, the third generation runs the winery, and the adjoining 40 acres of vineyards. The 2007 Bodegas Campante Versatus is $11.50.Jarrett Osborn is the wine buyer at Riverwalk Wine & Spirits in Edwards


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