Rias Baixas, Galicia is the smallest of Spain’s varied wine zones. Located on the Atlantic coast just above Portugal, the verdant region benefits from abundant rainfall – nearly twice as much as the rest of the country. This coupled with the fresh sea air helps to lengthen the growing season and helps add a depth of flavor to the grapes. Galicia has achieved world recognition as the region where Albariño, the predominate grape of the area, is nurtured. Albarino creates light wines with lively acidity while the chalky hillside vineyards add a dimension of minerality. The lush bouquet hints of stone fruit and honeysuckle. Other grape varieties that are grown in this area are Loureira and Treixadura.
Méntrida Located in the center of Spain just north of Toledo, Mentrida’s extreme climate of long cold winters and excessively hot, dry summer’s results in low yielding vineyards. Here the soil is predominately sand and granite and the vineyards produce grapes with highly concentrated flavors. Tempranillo and Garnacha are widely planted in this region.
Rioja Wine enthusiasts around the world often refer to Rioja as the Bordeaux of Spain. Nestled between the Sierra de la Demanda and the Navarra wine regions, the terroir is divided into three zones:
– Alta the highest in the west.
– Alavesa centrally located on an elevated plateau.
– Baja the hottest and lowest.
Tempranillo, a delicate grape with Pinot Noir characteristics, dominates the area. It is traditionally blended with Garnacha to create robust wines with exceptional forward fruit. Although the majority of wine produced in this area is red, white wines produced possess mild fruit flavor and a delicate acidity. Viura, Malvasia Riojana and Garnacha Blanca are cultivated in this region.
Toro Northwestern central Spain where the climate is hot and arid while the soil, a challenging blend of gravel, sand and clay, is the perfect environment for Tinto de Toro, a strain of Tempranillo particular to this region. Tinto de Toro is generally blended with Garnacha to create lush, full-bodied wines.