Tim's Wine Tour Blog

Our day in Rías Baixas


Cambados is a very pretty town situated right on the Atlantic coast and is in the heart of the Salnes sub zone of Rías Baixas.  Albariño is the most important grape variety. 

Our first visit was a mere 650 metres from the Parador so made for a very leisurely start to the day. The historic Bodegas del Palacio de Fefiñanes was our destination. The amazing buildings date back to 1583 and the winery back to 1928 – the first Rías Baixas estate wine.

Carmen showed us the incredible 200 year old (we think!) pergola trained vines and guided us through the different sections of the winery that related to the various cuvees the estate makes.

Then into the tasting room for a fascinating array of wines that gave us all a revised opinion of the diversity of expression that Albarino is capable of.

Their entry level Albariño is all stainless steel produced – clean and fresh with great acidity and bright malic fruit.

The 1853 has some barrel ageing which gives the wine a roundness and depth.

The III Año spends three years on the lees in stainless steel and was wonderfully rich.

The Armas de Lanzos comes from the exceptionally old vines and showed an amazing depth and intensity.

Carmen then surprised us with a magnum of 2006 Albariño which was superb – deeper in colour and showing some oily, Riesling like characteristics but proved the ageing ability of even an entry level wine.

A great first visit.

From Fefiñanes it was just a 20 minute drive to Pazo de Señorans – one of the best known names in the region although it has only been around for 30 years. Its home is a fabulous old traditional Galician manor house that has been restored to its former glory by the current owners and boasts spectacular gardens, cellars, courtyards and a chapel.

Andrea hosted our visit and gave lots of great detail about the history and the subtleties of the architecture and we saw the ‘panic room’ where the King of Portugal once allegedly hid!

The three wines the estate makes are superb. No oak is used at all, but there is great emphasis on lees ageing which gives the wine characteristic Señorans style.  The 2018 Albariño was a delicious aperitif, anytime kind of wine, the 2015 had greater richness and length, while 2010 showed the potential that the Albariño grape has for longevity.

More Albariño then followed accompanied by a lunch’s worth of canapés – and the we sat down in the sumptuous dining room for baked scallops, a daube of beef and a vanilla mousse with cake. All washed down with more Albariño and some Orujo and Agurdiente at the end.

I look forward to finding out if anyone managed to eat at all in the evening.