Spain

Spanish Wines


The two most famous Spanish red regions are Rioja and Ribera del Duero - and in both of these the wines are dominated by Tempranillo.


This is where the character of Spanish reds is founded: strawberry-scented Tempranillo, traditionally aged in American oak barrels, which impart a vanilla sweetness (though increasingly now bodegas are employing more French oak barrels, or a mix). We try and find interesting reds beyond Rioja, for example listing wines from Toro, Bierzo and Catalonia. What are the other qualities which make Spanish reds interesting and exciting?


First is the heritage of old vines. As in the south of France, Spain retains large plantings of very old vines, especially the red varieties, Tempranillo, Monastrell (Mourvèdre), Garnacha (Grenache) and Carignan. These deliver concentrated, high quality juice - great raw material.


Second, and less well-known to us here, there is an exciting regionalism. One might be aware of the Catalan or Basque spirit of independence, but on wine labels from Galicia and Valencia too one sees words which are not Castilian Spanish. That regionalism is expressed in the preservation and celebration of local grape varieties, many unique to Spain.


Finally, the reds can offer amazing value. Unsurprisingly the domestic wine market has collapsed since 2008, and we encounter many estates very keen to work us, and open to gentle negotiation.

Spain

  • El Lagar de Isilla, Ribera Del Duero, Reserva, 2011

    Product Code: LAH311

    El Lagar de Isilla, Ribera Del Duero, Reserva, 2011

    “100% Tempranillo, including some parcels 80-90 years old. As of November 2015 still youthful, showing generous mocha oak notes and a strong...”

    Stone, Vine & Sun rating

    Full Bodied

    Rated 4 out of 5
    Light > Full
    • Origin: Spain
    • Region: Ribera Del Duero
    • Colour: Red
    • Bottle Size: 75cl
    • ABV: 15%
    More Info
  • El Lagar de Isilla, Ribera Del Duero, Crianza, 2012

    Product Code: LAH412

    El Lagar de Isilla, Ribera Del Duero, Crianza, 2012

    “At El Lagar de Isilla the Crianza is 100% Tempranillo from 40-70 year old vines, given about fourteen months in half French and half American oak...”

    Stone, Vine & Sun rating

    Full Bodied

    Rated 4 out of 5
    Light > Full
    • Origin: Spain
    • Region: Ribera Del Duero
    • Colour: Red
    • Bottle Size: 75cl
    • ABV: 15%
    More Info
  • Vega del Rayo, Rioja, Vendimia Seleccionada, 2015

    Product Code: VEG215

    Vega del Rayo, Rioja, Vendimia Seleccionada, 2015

    “A blend of about 70% Tempranillo, 20% Mazuelo and 10% Graciano, which goes into American and Russian oak barrels, this is a cheerful, medium-bodied...”

    Stone, Vine & Sun rating

    Medium Bodied

    Rated 3 out of 5
    Light > Full
    • Origin: Spain
    • Region: Rioja
    • Colour: Red
    • Bottle Size: 75cl
    • ABV: 12.5%
    More Info
  • Segares, Rioja Tempranillo, 2015

    Product Code: NES115

    Segares, Rioja Tempranillo, 2015

    “Unoaked Tempranillo, from 30 year old vines which deliver excellent concentration for an example of the joven style. Vibrant purple. Lifted scent....”

    Stone, Vine & Sun rating

    Light Medium Bodied

    Rated 2 out of 5
    Light > Full
    • Origin: Spain
    • Region: Rioja
    • Colour: Red
    • Bottle Size: 75cl
    • ABV: 13.5%
    More Info
  • Segares, Rioja Reserva, 2008

    Product Code: NES408

    Segares, Rioja Reserva, 2008

    “100% Tempranillo, 40% in new French barrels, 60% in older American oak. Sombre purple. Complex bouquet, ranging from toasty oak and cooked red fruit...”

    Stone, Vine & Sun rating

    Full Bodied

    Rated 4 out of 5
    Light > Full
    • Origin: Spain
    • Region: Rioja
    • Colour: Red
    • Bottle Size: 75cl
    • ABV: 14%
    More Info
  • Los Colmillos, Toro, 2011

    Product Code: COL111

    Los Colmillos, Toro, 2011

    “This vineyard (which translates as "The Tusks") is documented as from 1950; but that was because the then owner didn’t want to admit it...”

    Stone, Vine & Sun rating

    Full Bodied

    Rated 4 out of 5
    Light > Full
    • Origin: Spain
    • Region: Toro
    • Colour: Red
    • Bottle Size: 75cl
    • ABV: 15.5%
    More Info
  • Eternum Viti, Toro, 2013

    Product Code: ETE113

    Eternum Viti, Toro, 2013

    “A stunning 100% Tinta di Toro (the local variant of Tempranillo) from old vines.”

    Stone, Vine & Sun rating

    Full Bodied

    Rated 4 out of 5
    Light > Full
    • Origin: Spain
    • Region: Toro
    • Colour: Red
    • Bottle Size: 75cl
    • ABV: 14.5%
    More Info
  • Audius, Rioja Crianza, Vendimia Seleccionada, 2013

    Product Code: AUD113

    Audius, Rioja Crianza, Vendimia Seleccionada, 2013

    “Deep youthful purple. Fragrant. This 100% Tempranillo is crafted in a modern style, showing lively red fruit, generous flavours with moderate oak,...”

    Stone, Vine & Sun rating

    Full Bodied

    Rated 4 out of 5
    Light > Full
    • Origin: Spain
    • Region: Rioja
    • Colour: Red
    • Bottle Size: 75cl
    • ABV: 14%
    More Info
  • L’Olivera, Naltres, Costers del Segre 2014

    Product Code: OLI813

    L’Olivera, Naltres, Costers del Segre 2014

    “Cabernet Sauvignon, Grenache, Trepat and Touriga Nacional, lightly oaked, this is fresh and aromatic. Very deep tone. Berried aromas with a twist of...”

    Stone, Vine & Sun rating

    Full Bodied

    Rated 4 out of 5
    Light > Full
    • Origin: Spain
    • Region: Catalonia
    • Colour: Red
    • Bottle Size: 75cl
    • ABV: 14.5%
    More Info
  • Las Gavias, Garnacha, Campo de Borja, Spain, 2014

    Product Code: GAV114

    Las Gavias, Garnacha, Campo de Borja, Spain, 2014

    “Spain (and Campo de Borja in particular) is so good at turning out pretty, well-priced wines based on Grenache / Garnacha.”

    Stone, Vine & Sun rating

    Medium Bodied

    Rated 3 out of 5
    Light > Full
    • Origin: Spain
    • Region: Campo de Borja
    • Colour: Red
    • Bottle Size: 75
    • ABV: 14%
    More Info
  • Tierra Fuerte, Graciano, Méntrida, 2014

    Product Code: TIE114

    Tierra Fuerte, Graciano, Méntrida, 2014

    “The Graciano grape makes elegant wine, and is often included in Rioja. Here it’s grown in Mentrida in the province of Toledo, crafted by Beatriz...”

    Stone, Vine & Sun rating

    Full Bodied

    Rated 4 out of 5
    Light > Full
    • Origin: Spain
    • Region: Mentrida
    • Colour: Red
    • Bottle Size: 75cl
    • ABV: 14%
    More Info
  • Herència Altés, Garnatxa Negra, Terra Alta, 2015

    Product Code: HER115

    Herència Altés, Garnatxa Negra, Terra Alta, 2015

    “Bright cherry aromas - and a generous red and black cherry mouthful, a little wild, with bright acid and some grip. Perfect for cool-weather food -...”

    Stone, Vine & Sun rating

    Medium Bodied

    Rated 3 out of 5
    Light > Full
    • Origin: Spain
    • Region: Terra Alta
    • Colour: Red
    • Bottle Size: 75cl
    • ABV: 14.5%
    More Info

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