Spanish Red 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.

El Lagar de Isilla, Ribera Del Duero, Mantanza de Soria, 2019

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Save £33.54

Jancis Robinson
El Lagar de Isilla, Ribera Del Duero, Mantanza de Soria, 2019

From parcels of old vines (70-80 years old) around the village of Mantanza de Soria this is 95%...

Style

Light > Full

OriginSpain

RegionRibera del Duero

ColourRed

ABV14.5%

Bottle75cl

CodeLAH619

GrapeTempranillo & Albillo Mayor

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Peique, Mencia, Bierzo, 2021

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Save £15.00

Peique, Mencia, Bierzo, 2021

Of the 40 hectares of this family run estate 98% is dedicated to the Mencia grape. This shows...

Style

Light > Full

OriginSpain

RegionBierzo

ColourRed

ABV13.5%

Bottle75cl

CodePEI221

GrapeMencia

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Finca Tobella, Negre, Priorat, 2020

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Save £21.00

Finca Tobella, Negre, Priorat, 2020

From a recently founded estate in Priorat in Catalonia, a great Spanish terroir, on steep...

Style

Light > Full

OriginSpain

RegionPriorat

ColourRed

ABV14.5%

Bottle75cl

CodeTOB120

GrapeCarignan, Cabernet Sauvignon & Grenache

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La Purisima, Monastrell, Yecla, 2020

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Save £12.30

La Purisima, Monastrell, Yecla, 2020

From vines on the Yecla plateau in Murcia at 500-900m, a simple but smartly dressed bottle....

Style

Light > Full

OriginSpain

RegionYecla

ColourRed

ABV14%

Bottle75cl

CodePUR120

GrapeMonastrell

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Old Hands, Yecla, Joven, 2022

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Save £13.50

Old Hands, Yecla, Joven, 2022

100% Monastrell, this is a really pleasing red wine. No oak, just pure juicy dark fruit in this...

Style

Light > Full

OriginSpain

RegionYecla

ColourRed

ABV14%

Bottle75cl

CodeOLD122

GrapeMonastrell

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La Purisima, Syrah, Yecla, 2021

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Save £12.60

La Purisima, Syrah, Yecla, 2021

From vines on the Yecla plateau in Murcia at 500- 900m, a simple but smartly dressed bottle....

Style

Light > Full

OriginSpain

RegionYecla

ColourRed

ABV13.5%

Bottle75cl

CodePUR421

GrapeSyrah

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La Purisima, Filarmonia, Yecla, 2022

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Save £15.00

La Purisima, Filarmonia, Yecla, 2022

MSM stands for Monastrell, Syrah and Merlot, 34% of the former and 33% of the others. Certified...

Style

Light > Full

OriginSpain

RegionYecla

ColourRed

ABV14%

Bottle75cl

CodePUR322

GrapeMonastrell

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Bodegas Borsao, Garnacha, Joven, Campo de Borja, 2022

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Save £10.74

Bodegas Borsao, Garnacha, Joven, Campo de Borja, 2022

Bodegas Borsao is a big co-operative, marketing wines from over 600 growers whose land...

Style

Light > Full

OriginSpain

RegionCampo de Borja

ColourRed

ABV13.5%

Bottle75cl

CodeBOR322

GrapeGrenache

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El Lagar de Isilla, Ribera Del Duero, Roble, 2020

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Save £17.10

El Lagar de Isilla, Ribera Del Duero, Roble, 2020

A blend of 92% Tempranillo, 5% Abillo Mayor and 3% Cabernet Sauvignon. Classic strawberry and...

Style

Light > Full

OriginSpain

RegionRibera Del Duero

ColourRed

ABV14%

Bottle75cl

CodeLAH120

GrapeTempranillo

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Lagar de Isilla, Ribera del Duero, La Torreta, 2020
Tim Aktin

"Viña La Torreta hails from a 73-year-old vineyard of the same name in Langa de Duero....

Style

Light > Full

OriginSpain

RegionRibera Del Duero

ColourRed

ABV13.5%

Bottle75cl

CodeLAH820

GrapeTempranillo

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El Lagar de Isilla, Ribera Del Duero, Reserva, 2017

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Save £31.80

El Lagar de Isilla, Ribera Del Duero, Reserva, 2017

100% Tempranillo, including some parcels 80-90 years old; in French barrels for 18 months....

Style

Light > Full

OriginSpain

RegionRibera Del Duero

ColourRed

ABV15%

Bottle 75cl

CodeLAH317

GrapeTempranillo

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El Lagar de Isilla, Ribera Del Duero, Crianza, 2020

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Save £25.14

El Lagar de Isilla, Ribera Del Duero, Crianza, 2020

90% Tempranillo, 5% Cabernet Sauvignon and 5% Albillo Mayor from vines up to 70 years old. This...

Style

Light > Full

OriginSpain

RegionRibera Del Duero

ColourRed

ABV14.5%

Bottle75cl

CodeLAH420

GrapeTempranillo, Cabernet Sauvignon & Abillo Mayor

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