Albariño is a variety of white wine grape grown in Galicia (northwest Spain) and northern Portugal, where it is used to make varietal white wines. Its name "Alba-Riño" means "the white from Rhine" and it has locally been thought to be a Riesling clone originating from the Alsace region of France, although it should be noted that the earliest known records of Riesling as a grape variety date from the 15th, rather than the 12th, century. It should not be confused with the Alvarinho Liláz grape of Madeira.
In early 2009 a controversy emerged about the identity of the variety of vines in some Albarino vineyards in Australia. It is now confirmed that these vines are Savagnin. The problem originated in 1989 when Spanish authorities made a mix up when supplying propagating material to the CSIRO. All so called Albarino vines from these sources are now known to be Savagnin.
Spanish style seafood dishes or tapas are the the obvious choices for food pairing with Albarino varietal wines. However it is a very versatile variety and can be used in a similar way to Riesling with all manner of seafood dishes, especially those with garlic. Paella, pastas and risottos will be enjoyed with these wine as well.