Taste Test: Txakolina - Imbibe Magazine Subscribe + Save

The Basque Country wine Txakolina (pronounced chock-oh-lee-nah), also known as Txakoli and Chacolí, was historically a farm wine produced for simple enjoyment at home and unfamiliar beyond Spain. However, as delicious regional wines tend to do, in recent years the typically white, often naturally effervescent wine grew into a global delight. Made by small-scale producers in three established Txakolina appellations, the crisp, easy-drinking wine can cut through even the hottest of days. 

Antxiola Getariako Txakolina 2020

Produced by Bodegas Zudugarai and named for a famous home in a neighboring town, Antxiola is made from Hondarrabi Zuri and Hondarrabi Beltza vines ranging in age from 10 to 40 years. The wine opens with sweet, jasmine notes before a prickle of carbonation ignites green apple and lime flavors. The finish is particularly delightful, full of minerality and a touch of anise. $16.99, binnys.com

Uriondo Bizkaiko Txakolina 2020

Uriondo produces Txakoli from a single small, organically farmed vineyard featuring a mix of predominantly clay and sandy soils. Using native grapes and yeasts, lead winemaker Isabel Viñas creates wines that honor Basque traditions in the Bizkaiko Txakolina DO. The wine features no carbonation, yet remains zippy and refreshing with the essence of the Atlantic Ocean. $18.99, astorwines.com

Txomin Etxaniz 2020

A rich body and slight funk set this bottling from the Txueka family apart. The chalky loam soil where the vines—planted between 1915 and 2000—grow translates through to the wine itself, adding texture to flavors of lemon and apple. Macerated cold, Hondarrabi Zuri and Hondarrabi Beltza grapes are then pressed and fermented with indigenous yeast, resulting in a wine with crisp, cooling character. $21.97, pjwine.com

Juanjo Tellaetxe “Tantaka” Txakolina Blanco 2019

Producer Juanjo Tellaetxe hand-harvests Hondarrabi Zuri from four small plots for this special Txakolina from the humid Arabako DO, where the wines are traditionally produced sans effervescence. As winemaker (and local priest), Tellaetxe employs spontaneous fermentation practices for the wine, which bears a fuller body, slightly elevated alcohol level, and perfumy floral notes combined with a savory quality. $23.99, terrestoria.com

Ulacia Txakolina 2020

Located in the Getariako Txakolina DO just west of San Sebastian, Ulacia crafts a zingy, sharp Txakolina, tangy with bright citrus notes. The wine, made from Hondarrabi Zuri and Hondarrabi Beltza varieties, is dry and delicate, with an electric current of natural carbonation from fermentation, which carries it swiftly and cleanly across the palate. $17.99, gordonswine.com

Artomaña Xarmant Txakoli 2020

With a name that translates to “charming,” this Txakolina reflects the terroir of the Orduña Valley, where breezes sweep in off the Cantabrian Sea during summer’s peak. Made from a blend of organically farmed varieties including Hondarrabi Zuri, Gros Manseng, and Petit Manseng, the wine is fermented with indigenous yeasts. It results in a perfectly crisp and refreshing bottle popping with citrusy acidity. $18, leonandsongr.com

Ameztoi Getariako Txakolina 2020

Made from 100 percent Hondarribi Zuri grown on traditional trellises along the slopes of Spain’s green northern coast, this Txakolina from Ameztoi is a straightforward embodiment of traditional styles, with its clean, natural blip of carbonation from vinification. The bottling, from the fishing village of Getaria, leans into sea spray, green apple candy, and lime characteristics. $22.96, backroomwines.com

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