Allow us to introduce you to the magnificent 2012 Ercavio Airen,a Spanish white of insane refreshing-ness and a proud part of the WA Unicorn Wines box. The WA Lowdown is designed to teach you everything you need to know about these beautiful bottles and the liquid therein: tasting notes, nose & palate, musical suggestions, the perfect food pairing and its recipe… even the right occasion on which to indulge. Get ready to get thirsty!
A Brief History by Kaitlin Ohlinger
Would you believe us if we told you Airén is the most widely planted grape in the world? No? Well, believe it. With around 700,000 planted acres (almost all in Spain), close seconds Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon come in at around 400,000 acres each. What gives? An important discrepancy is that Airén is a widely spaced grape. The lack of rainfall in its home region of La Mancha, Spain means that it needs a little extra space around its roots in order to get enough H2O. Airén is sort of the Mystique of grapes: it will adapt to almost any soil type. It doesn’t mind extreme temperatures and is for the most part drought resistant; something of a wonder-grape. Airén originates in Spain, and to this day much of it is shipped off for bulk wine or brandy production. Should you happen across one, be prepared for a fresh, green and citrusy little white. Perfect for Summer thirst-quenching.
The Nitty Gritty
Home: Cabañas de Yepes, Spain
Occasion: As an après skydiving drink
Best Paired with: Super Simple Roasted Brussel Sprouts
Rock out to: Wilco- Sky Blue Sky
The Tasting Notes
Have you ever walked barefoot through a breezy orchard with tongues tied to your entire body? Well, you have now. This obscure sounding gem of a grape is as light, crisp and citrusy as an early summer’s day spent in a field of wildflowers. Add zesty grapefruit, granny smith apples, pears and sweetgrass to a tonic finish and you’ve got a wine that has your heart, soul and (for the first time) your undivided attention.
Nose: Yellow apples and lime, Chardonnay without the butter
Palate: Neither too sharp nor too round, soft with a talc dry finish
The Perfect Pairing
Super Simple Roasted Brussel Sprouts, courtesy of Serious Eats
1 1/2 pounds brussels sprouts, trimmed and split in half
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Adjust oven rack to upper position, place a foil-lined rimmed baking sheet on it, and preheat oven to 500°F.
- Toss sprouts with olive oil and season to taste with salt and pepper. Remove baking sheet from oven and add brussels sprouts, working quickly to turn them all cut-side-down.
- Return to oven and roast until tender and deeply browned, about 20 minutes total. Serve immediately