Spain is the world’s most widely planted wine producing nation, with over 2.9 million acres of vineyards and it ranks as the third largest producer too. There are many well-known Spanish wines, from Cava to Rioja and Sherry to Garnacha Blanca and here we’re taking a closer look at everything Spain has to offer.
Spanish White Wines
Chances are you’ve tried a Spanish white wine or two but here is a chance to truly find the right one for your palate. On Spain’s Northern Coast you find the Basque Country, known for its low-alcohol zest-rich and fruity wines, including Txakoli and the sweet, perfumed Txakolirose. Moving over to the small but productive region of Valdeorras in Galicia you’ll find rich and crisp melon-flavoured wines including those from the Godello grape, known for its harmonious relationship with the succulent seafood Spain is known for.
Exceptional whites can also be found in the region of Rueda, south-east of Valdeorras, where white wines made from the Verdejo varietal shine. Whilst some are blended with Viura or Sauvignon Blanc if your bottle reads ‘Rueda Verdejo’ you can be sure of the 100% verdejocontent and enjoy the sweet yet nutty flavour it offers.
Spanish Red Wines
If you prefer red to white then chances are you’ve had more than your fair share of rioja and perhaps a bottle of Tempranillo or two. TheTempranillo grape is the most planted red varietal in the whole of Spain. Let’s start with Rioja, one of Spain’s most famous and popular exports.
Rioja reds are a sensational blend of ripe grapes with a deep earthiness. In Rioja you may find Tempranillo grapes blended with many other varietals including Garnacha, Mazuelo and Maturana Tinta. Classic Rioja wines often have an intensely fruity flavour with notes of plum and prune.
For an earthier alternative to your favourite sun-blushed Californian red, then the reds of the Spanish region of Priorat are for you. Most of the reds in this region are blends of Garnacha and Cariñena, with Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon and other varietals included too.
Sherry and Cava
Two of the most famous wines out of Spain aren’t your traditional reds or whites. First there is Cava, Spain’s popular sparkling wine. Most of the country’s Cava is produced in Catalonia and whilst most Cava is made solely from white grape varietals, there are rose offerings which include red grapes too. Cava is popular thanks to its price tag and bright, vivacious character.
Second up is sherry, Spain’s sweet fortified wine, with many different types and styles. From dry Manzanilla to the sweetest, syrup-rich PedroXimenez, Spain has a sherry for every occasion. All sherry is made in and around Jerez de la Frontera in Andalusia.
The wines of Spain are so diverse that their flavours can appeal to anyone and with a little experimentation you might find the perfect one for you.