Astobiza is a gorgeous winery in the Txakoli’ de Alava D.O. of Spain. Named after a portion of the mountains nearby, Astobiza is a young bodega with old family history in winemaking. Xabier Abando’s memories of his father making wine and growing up in the vineyards during the 1950’s carried him past his father’s untimely death, when Xabier was only 15 years old, and gave him the motivation and dreams to one day create his own bodega. His passion began to take form in 1996 when he accrued an estate near the town of Okendo, and began planting his first 2 hectares of vines — he has continued to grow ever since. Once his vines began producing grapes he found suitable, he built his bodega in 2008 for his first vintage of wine at the age of 68. Now with his son-in-law Jon Zubeldia, and the help of enologist Ana Martin, Xabier is making beautiful Txakoli’ from his organically farmed estate that would have made his father proud.
The Astobiza Txakoli’ comes from the upper reach of the Alava zone at about 650 feet above sea level. Nestled within the rolling hills of the Basque country, the local varietals are adapted to the continental climate with a heavy Atlantic influence. The local grapes called Hondarrabi Zuri, were hand harvested into small baskets from the organically farmed estate vines; and after a cold and slow fermentation, the wine was kept in stainless steel until it was bottled as the estate’s flagship wine. This white has delicious and brightly fresh ripe fruit, while retaining the classic brilliant acidity that is characteristic of Txakoli’. Aromas of white pear, young peach, green apple, and fresh grapefruit lead into an extremely fresh palate that is balanced with minerality, acidity, and persistence.