The Islands of Spain offer a wide range of wines from Listán Negro-based reds to sweet whites made with Moscatel. Wine Club Membership Wine clubs are a great way to stay connected to your favorite wineries. It is also not uncommon to see grapes trained up the sides of trees! Inland area with fruiter wines because of more moderated weather. Food matching A fresh, light to medium bodied wine, Albariño is ideally suited to antipasto, tapas and fresh seafood, particularly calamari served with a squeeze of lemon. Regions to Know: Rías Baixas, Ribeira Sacra, Bierzo, Txakolina. Lush green valleys in the mountains lead to cities along the water where the cuisine includes lots of fresh fish. It has made its home in the Rias Baixas wine region of Galicia on the cooler north-west coast of the country which borders Portugal and where the grape is … // A beautiful map to guide you to your next bottle of French wine. Our guide to the wine regions of Spain began in Part 1covering the wine regions of Alto Ebro including La Rioja, the Andalusian wine region, the Aragonese wine region, the Balearics wine region, the Canarian wine region, and the Cantabrian wine region. Galicia, home to the region of Rías Baixas, is among the prestigious group of wine regions from around the globe that were chosen for recognition. There are nearly 20,000 different growers in the region, with tiny plots. Expect more saline, mineral-driven wines. Key Grapes: Carignan, Garnacha, Cava Grapes: Macabeu (aka Viura), Parellada, and Xarello. In Rueda, there grows an exceptional, minerally Spanish white wine grape called Verdejo. Try it with ceviche, seafood risotto, grilled (or fried) fish tacos, oysters, mussels, and clams. Regions to Know: Rioja, Ribera del Duero, Toro, Rueda, Cariñena, Key Grapes: Tempranillo, Garnacha, Carignan, Verdejo, Viura. Rías Baixas is divided into five sub-zones: Each region has its own unique terroir, but all areas share a similar sandy, granitic soil type. Soutomaior: The smallest of the five growing areas on a river estuary. Explore the Spain wine map to reveal the country’s most famous wines. Flavors: Apricot, Melon, Peach, Honeysuckle, Grapefruit. Lists wineries by region and contains information on festivals, events at wineries and wineshop hours. (For comparison, the oldest known grapevine in the world is over 400 years old.). Meanwhile, in Catalonia, white Garnacha, better known as Garnacha Blanca, produces fine wines across the map, particularly in the Terra Alta region. ... From the coolest region in the Rias Baixas comes this refreshing and wonderfully pale yellow albariño. Albariño is the Galician name for the grape; in Portugal it is known as Alvarinho, and sometimes as Cainho Branco. Albariño (al-bar-EEN-yo) is a white wine grape primarily grown in Spain's Rías Baixas region. Most Albariño are drunk young and fresh however, due to the high acidity and phenolic structure (from the grape’s thick skins) it has incredible potential for aging. An aged PX, like those from Bodegas Toro Abala, is sweet enough to be poured over pancakes (making it the most luxurious breakfast syrup in the history of the world). Galicia is one of the 17 top-level administrative regions (known as comunidades autónomas) of Spain. If I had to sum up the best food pairing for albarino in one word it would be seafood. Perhaps it’s a reason to make the trek. The country boasts more than a million hectares of vineyards and around 600 grape varieties. Old vine Carignan and Garnacha hold the key to their fruity-yet-slate-y reds. Somehow, Spanish wines continue to fly under the radar. The region skirts the coast and produces wines with intense minerality and salinity. Situated in Spain’s northwest corner, beautiful Galicia is known as “green Spain” for its verdant, foggy coastal environment that’s more reminiscent of Ireland than the rest of the country. Today, there are more than 115 dynamic wineries in San Diego County and the local industry is booming. ... Best-known are the whites, especially Albariño and Godello, although Galicia has plenty of other varietal wines. Expect to drink mineral-driven, zesty white wines along with a few tart, elegant and aromatic red wines made with Mencía (“men-THEE-yah”). Rías Baixas is a DO wine zone in the Galicia region of northwestern Spain, … Here, ­ Albariño is the dominant grape. California: The San Luis Obispo coast (between Santa Barbera and Monterey) has a similar climate to Albariño’s homeland. Today, Galicia is best known for its Rias Baixas wine. (2.4 million acres). Rías Baixas is controlled by a wine commission called the Consejo Regulador. The Rías Baixas Wine Route is an invitation to explore everything that Albariño embodies; the wineries and vineyards where it is produced, the people who make this possible and the way of life surrounding it. Want to drink better wine? A Map of Spanish Wine Spain is diversity: diversity of culture, gastronomy, and, of course, wine. Regions to Know: Méntrida, Uclés, Vinos de Madrid, etc, Key Grapes: Tempranillo, Garnacha, Albillo, Petit Verdot. In 2013, we launched our first edition of the Spain wine map for free. Key Grapes: Palomino, Listán Negro, Callet. Soutomaior: Nestled in the hills at the head of the Rías de Vigo, it is the smallest of the sub-regions … Havens made a bit of wine in 1999 and debuted it with poached lobster during a dinner at Carmel's Highlands Inn.The timing was right. Uruguay: Albariño may be relatively new to Uruguay, but the climate there is eerily similar to that of the Galician coast, and wineries like the popular Bodegas Garzon are making precise, mineral driven wines. For truly elegant white wines… The central plateau or Meseta Central is the inner plateau of Spain and home to capital city, Madrid. So, the best way to learn about Spanish wine is to break up the country into 7 distinct climates. The Vinho Verde DOC has a total of nine sub-regions and Alvarinho does quite well in Monção e Melgaço. The center of the Rias Baixas and Albariño wine region is the town of Cambados. window.__mirage2 = {petok:"14fe4301c97c1e22fc79368f3c284c33c1ed25b4-1609529314-1800"}; Famously grown in the Rías Baixas region on Spain’s Galician coast, Albariño wines are intensely aromatic, with tart green fruit, peaches, and a hint of ocean spray on the palate. The southern Mediterranean on the Spain wine map, offers great options for fruit-forward wine fans. Tucked into the cool coastal region of northwestern Spain, the Rías Baixas D.O. In Jumilla, Bodega El Nido puts out a consistently high-rated Monastrell-Cabernet blends. It’s common to see the word “Albariño” on Spanish labels unlike other areas which label by region. Fortunately, the area offers 2000+ hours of growing degree days, making it possible to fully ripen Albariño. Vines are trellised above your head, Viticulture and vinification in Rìas Baixas from, Albariño on the San Luis Obispo Coast from, A very geeky look at the truth behind phenolic bitterness from. Wine Tasting Group Series. But truth be told, there seems to be one big common misconception about San Diego's wine industry: many people think Temecula is part of San Diego County, but that's not true. While there is a great deal of white Airén growing here, the real interesting stuff comes from old vine Garnacha and Petit Verdot growing at even higher elevations in the hills. is Spain’s premier white wine region. This cool spot has coastal fog and an ocean breeze that moderates California’s heat. Wines from the Canary Islands are perceived as gritty and rustic because of the volcanic soils. There are only two DOCa in all of Spain: Rioja DOCa (arguably Spain’s most fam… [CDATA[ Key Grapes: Palomino, Pedro Ximénez, Muscat de Alexandria. The name Rías Baixas is Galician for “Lower Rivers” and there are four main rivers (Muros y Noia, Arousa, Pontevedra, and Vigo). Spanish and Portuguese winemakers have always treasured freshness with Albariño and don’t age in oak. The wine production area is subdivided into five areas: The Val do Salnés, the best sub-region, scattered around the picturesque village of Cambados, made up of 70% Albariño; Rosal, the southernmost sub wine region located just south of the lovely town of Baiona (which happens to have a beautiful Parador hotel). Because the weather is so cool here, Vinho Verde commonly enlists Pergola training systems to promote airflow. Even with its thick skins and hardy vines, Albariño is sensitive to mildew and rot. Meat Pairing: Lighter meats, fish, and seafood sing with Albariño. The regions are incredibly diverse, producing everything from zesty Albariño to inky, black Monastrell. A friend to all things from the sea, Albariño pairs exceptionally well with white fish and meats as well as leafy green herbs. 12 best albariño wines. Spain’s most fashionable white wine, Albariño is thought to have been first planted in Spain by monks in the 12 th century AD. Andalucía is most famous for Sherry. Regions to Know: Rías Baixas, Ribeira Sacra, Bierzo, … Cava is Spain’s answer to Champagne. Portugal produces some Albarino too. This sub-region borders Spain and has a warmer climate because the hills stop heavy rains. Rías Baixas, closest to the Atlantic coast, is the largest and best known of the quintet. To join our wine club, visit or call 707-945-0542. Regions to Know: Utiel-Requena, Yecla, Jumilla, Bullas, Key Grapes: Monastrell, Bobal, Cabernet Sauvignon. Northwest “Green” Spain. Thus, in wet regions it’s important to keep the roots dry with well draining soils (such as sandy, granitic soils). More precisely, many producers of this fruity white wine are in the Rias Baixas area. Cheese Pairing: Soft cheeses like burrata, or semi-hard cheeses such as manchego, gouda and salty feta will be killer alongside these fresh and bright wines. Val do Salnés: Spanish winemakers credit this as the birthplace of Albariño. Vegetable Pairing: The grassy notes of Albariño play well with fresh green herbs, like salsa verde. The dry Moscatel (Muscat de Alexandria) wines from this area suggest at how things are changing in Andalucía. @WineFolly, Estimated 2.4 million acres from International Organisation of Vine and Wine. From Cambados there are several bodegas you can visit within just a few miles. Buy Map. Galicia’s green, misty hills, rugged coast and bracing Atlantic winds (not to mention the local bagpipers) are more reminiscent of Ireland or Brittany than the image many have of Spain. I co-founded Wine Folly to help people learn about wine. The Albariño grape makes a crisp, refreshing, and fruity wine with a character all its own. Which makes sense considering where it comes from on the coast of Galicia in the Rias Baixas region of northern Spain.. Thus, all the different grapes (Loureiro, Avesso, Arinto, etc) are generally thrown in together, so the exact blend for many wines is a mystery. Along the coastline, Cava is the reigning queen. Winemaking has long been a tradition in Galicia, brought to the region by the ancient Romans and continued by the monks throughout the Middle Ages. To survive these arid conditions, vines are spaced far apart and grow close to the ground. Only wines that pass the Consejo test can be labeled “Rías Baixas.”, Flavors: Honeydew Melon, Lime, Lemon, Honeysuckle, Grapefruit. Because of this, Tempranillo and Garnacha produce fruitier, more elegantly styled wines. Because Spain is so diverse, it helps to get a lay of the land. Few places in the world have a more perfect Mediterranean climate. Average elevation here is about 2,500 feet (762 meters) and it’s sunny and dry. Key Regions: Islas Canarias, Illes Beleares In fact, there are many designated vineyard sites here, called “Vino de Pago” which show real promise. On the palate, Albariño wines have a weighty mid-palate and mouth-watering acidity that finishes with salinity and sometimes a subtle bitter note (like green almond or citrus pith). The grapes are tiny with thick skins. Let’s explore the major wine producing areas and understand what they’re best known for. Regional To Know: Sherry, Sierras de Málaga, Montilla-Moriles As with the most of the rest of Europe, Spain regulates wine production regionally, restricting which types and styles of wine can be produced from which grapes in each region. The Ebro and Duero River Valleys produce some of Spain’s most noteworthy Tempranillo wines. Cooler regions bring out Albarino’s more citrusy characteristics, as well as acidity. Highly regarded for crafting albariño, the winery has become a reference point for the grape. Among the first wave of new grapes that came to define today’s era of diversity in wine was albariño, from the Rías Baixas region of Galicia in northwestern Spain.. The grape’s indigenous ocean climate infuses the wine with salinity and tastes of mineral. Albarino (Alvarinho) is a white grape variety originating in Spain. Production is small … It’s called “PX” and it’s made from Pedro Ximénez grapes. Stark white albariza soil makes the Palomino vineyards in Cádiz look like a moonscape. I got a tattoo of grapes during veraison… does that make me a wine geek? There are two main “homes” where Albariño can be widely found: Rías Baixas in Spain, and Vinho Verde in Portugal (where it’s called Alvarinho). In this heavily populated region, many locals have vineyards and grow grapes for the regional Vinho Verde wine. There is also a strict tasting committee that samples all wines in Rías Baixas for quality assurance. WSET diploma seeker @haley.mercedes, Some of the oldest living vines in the world are Albariño vines and are up to 300 years old. James Beard Award-winning author and Wine Communicator of the Year. Galicia boasts five denominated wine regions (DOs). However, instead of using the same ol’ French grapes, they incorporate indigenous ones which make for savory wines with finesse. Most Vinho Verde are bright, dry wines with some spritz (carbonation), and lower alcohol levels ranging between 8.5% – 11.5% ABV. Albariño is a white grape originating from the eastern region of Portugal, where it is commonly known as Alvarinho. Possibly. It’s loved for its rich stone fruit flavors, a hint of salinity, and zippy acidity. The resulting wine displays pure varietal characters of peach and lime, with subtle minerality on a complex, long and dry finish. The powerhouse red wine area is definitely Priorat. The Sherry wines everyone ought to try are those on the dry side, including Manzanilla and Amontillado. Many grapes grow well in Catalunya because of the many unique microclimates from coast to inland hills. Montilla-Moriles on the other hand, produces one of the sweetest wines of them all. Albarino wine is changes drastically depending on the climate. What’s surprising, is Spain is the 3rd largest producer of wine with the largest land area dedicated to vineyards in the world! It is a popular white wine grape in Portugal but is equally popular in the northwestern region of Spain in Galicia, where it is widely grown in the Rias Baixas region. These regions are situated inside each of Spain’s Autonomias (similar to states or provinces) and are delineated into DO (Denominación de Origen), and DOCa (Denominación de Origen Calificada) quality levels with DOCa referring to the pinnacle of the scale. Albariño is the champion grape of Rías Baixas (REE-us BYE-shus), found in the extreme Northwest of the Spanish wine map. Today however, you can find a few producers making rich oak-aged styles with brioche-like aromas. In the past, most producers mixed the Albarino grapes with other grape varieties to produce wines.