Inner peace and Albarino

Coal and Feed
Last year, several close friends and I went on a somewhat unintentional grand food tour. I say unintentional because wallowing in local, ambrosial food was the joyful fringe benefit of our mini(*desperate-for-a-break*)-staycation in Northern California. 

After a gluttonous and sun-drenched few days in the town of Healdsburg, we headed to Marshall, where we had rented Coal and Feed (and, yes, this place is just as special as it looks in the photos). 

Nick's Cove
If you're not familiar with Marshall and the surrounding towns, you should get to know all of it. There is incredible food to be found: cheese; oysters; beer; meat; even cooking gear

All this is to say it was a GREAT trip. The kind that gives you happy memories to float on for months, even years to come. 

So, last week as I toiled away on an especially unpleasant task, I found myself daydreaming about our days of epicurial pleasure. 

In particular, I played over in my mind a wine and a plate of oysters. The wine was Tangent Albarino and the oysters were Hog Island's Kumamotos. Each on their own are beautiful expressions of the bounty of California. Together, they are a memory I cherish.

It's one of the great things about our senses. When we're using smell, taste, touch and even hearing while eating and drinking, we are cataloging joy. Then our wine and food experiences become rich and emotional memories that we can slosh around in should ever we need an escape.   

A little more about Albarino (al-baa-ree-nyo)
Albarino is a Spanish white varietal loved for its crisp minerality, fresh aromatics and juicy tropical notes. It is a wine that goes so well with shellfish you'll feel transported to a seaside town when you pair it with shrimp tacos, sushi, mussels and fries, or some very Spanish recipe such as grilled squid

Tangent, from Edna Valley, is one of the few producers of California-grown Albarino. What they are producing is incredible. If you can't find Tangent, look for producers from Spain's Rias Baixas (ree-ahs buy-shuss), which is really the motherland of the varietal. There are many amazing and well-priced Rias Baixas Albarinos on American shelves--Martin Codax, Burgans, Condes De Albarei are three good options.


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