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, 2014

    Product Code: LAH314

    El Lagar de Isilla, Ribera Del Duero, Reserva, 2014

    “100% Tempranillo, including some parcels 80-90 years old; in French barrels for 18 months. Pure, lifted red fruit perfume on smart oak. Currently...”

    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

    “94% Tempranillo from 40-70 year old vines, with a little Cabernet and Merlot, given fourteen months in French and American oak. Showy and extrovert,...”

    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: 14.5%
    More Info
  • Vega del Rayo, Rioja, Vendimia Seleccionada, 2016

    Product Code: VEG216

    Vega del Rayo, Rioja, Vendimia Seleccionada, 2016

    “A blend of about 95% Tempranillo and 5% Mazuelo, a cheerful, oaked (American and Russian) Rioja. Clean, raspberry, red and black cherry character,...”

    Stone, Vine & Sun rating

    Medium Bodied

    Rated 3 out of 5
    Light > Full
    • Origin: Spain
    • Region: Rioja
    • Colour: Red
    • Bottle Size: 75cl
    • ABV: 13%
    More Info
  • Segares, Rioja Tempranillo, 2016

    Product Code: NES116

    Segares, Rioja Tempranillo, 2016

    “Unoaked example of the joven style from 30 year old vines which deliver excellent concentration. Very ripe, pulpy and strawberryish, soft and juicy;...”

    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 Crianza, 2011

    Product Code: NES311

    Segares, Rioja Crianza, 2011

    “Excellent pure Tempranillo Rioja, all cooked strawberries and spice, attractively mellow and drinking very well. Now-2020”

    Stone, Vine & Sun rating

    Medium Bodied

    Rated 3 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

    “Pure Tempranillo, 40% in new French barrels, 60% in older American oak. It’s great to have some mature Rioja at hand. Very intense, all ripe and...”

    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, 2016

    Product Code: ETE116

    Eternum Viti, Toro, 2016

    “From Tinta de Toro, the name for the local variant of Tempranillo in Toro near Valladolid, aged in 70% French and 30% American oak. A showy, powerful...”

    Stone, Vine & Sun rating

    Full Bodied

    Rated 4 out of 5
    Light > Full
    • Origin: Spain
    • Region: Toro
    • 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, very lightly oaked, this is lively and aromatic. Gush of raspberries and blackberries,...”

    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

    “Campo de Borja is so good as a source of pretty, well-priced wines based on Grenache / Garnacha. Gorgeous gush of black cherry and raspberry, with a...”

    Stone, Vine & Sun rating

    Medium Bodied

    Rated 3 out of 5
    Light > Full
    • Origin: Spain
    • Region: Campo de Borja
    • Colour: Red
    • Bottle Size: 75cl
    • ABV: 14%
    More Info
  • El Lagar de Isilla, Ribera Del Duero, Roble, 2015 MAGNUM

    Product Code: LAH915

    El Lagar de Isilla, Ribera Del Duero, Roble, 2015 MAGNUM

    “Our best-selling wine from Lagar de Isilla, a bodega in La Vid, just east of Aranda de Duero. 95% Tempranillo with 5% Cabernet Sauvignon, with just...”

    Stone, Vine & Sun rating

    Full Bodied

    Rated 4 out of 5
    Light > Full
    • Origin: Spain
    • Region: Ribera Del Duero
    • Colour: Red
    • Bottle Size: 150cl
    • 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 cherry and strawberry 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
  • Marques de Arviza, Rioja Crianza, 2012

    Product Code: ARV102

    Marques de Arviza, Rioja Crianza, 2012

    “Nicely savoury, sweet-oaked (French and American barrels) and traditional style of Rioja. Now-2019”

    Stone, Vine & Sun rating

    Medium Bodied

    Rated 3 out of 5
    Light > Full
    • Origin: Spain
    • Region: Rioja
    • Colour: Red
    • Bottle Size: 75cl
    • ABV: 13.5%
    More Info
  • Segares, Rioja Crianza, 2011 Magnum

    Product Code: NES911

    Segares, Rioja Crianza, 2011 Magnum

    “Excellent pure Tempranillo Rioja, all cooked strawberries and spice, attractively mellow and drinking very well. Now-2020”

    Stone, Vine & Sun rating

    Medium

    Rated 3 out of 5
    Light > Full
    • Origin: Spain
    • Region: Rioja
    • Colour: Red
    • Bottle Size: 1.5l
    • ABV: 13.5%
    More Info

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