A DO officially established in 1988, Rías Baixas sits in northwest Spain’s Galicia region, adjacent to Portugal’s northern border. The word Rías refers to this region’s numerous wide channels, similar to fjords, which reach inland from the Atlantic Ocean. Rías Baixas (also called Rías Bajas) refers to the lower, or southern, part of the region. The area receives considerable attention thanks in large part to its white wines, which are often made from the Albariño (Alvarinho) grape. The Albariño vines are low yielding, and the thick-skinned grapes do not produce a lot of juice. This combination results in very flavorful wines that are highly sought after at home and abroad. Rías Baixas consists of five subzones: Val do Salnés (which boasts the most wineries), Condado do Tea, O Rosal, Ribiera do Ulla and Soutomaior.
[REE-ahs bi-SHAHS (BAH-hahs)]