Region: Ribera Del Duero
The first stop on my great wine tour was the Ribera Del Duero area in central Spain, a region now rivalling Rioja as Spain’s most popular red-wine producing area. Whilst the vineyards nestled amongst rocky mountains may not be the most spectacular to look at, thanks to a long history of wine-making expertise, the end product is exceptional. Between tastings I also managed to squeeze in a trip to the stunning 13th century Cathedral in Burgos – well worth a visit.
Wines: Muga White Barrel, Muga Reserva
Region: La Rioja
Of course, my trip had to include Spain’s most famous wine region, La Rioja which has over 500 wineries. I opted to explore the town of Haro, Rioja’s capital and paid a visit to the friendly Bodegas Muga where staff were warm and welcoming, encouraging visitors to try a number of wines whilst explaining the process from grape to glass. We then headed back to a traditional Spanish restaurant in town to savour the region’s cuisine; Riojan beans, delicate fish and a delicious San Marcos cake, made with cream, sponge and chocolate.
Wine: Chivite Coleccion 125 Vendemmia Tardiva
I ended my journey in Navarra, which lies on the Camino de Santiago pilgrimage route and borders Rioja. The wines in this region had a similar smooth, fruity notes, but the stand out was a beautifully sweet dessert wine from Bodega Chivite - the Chivite Coleccion.
Now back home, it’s certainly a different experience sipping wine on my friend’s and family's sofas rather than in the pleasant Spanish evening sun. But it’s great to be able to introduce these wines to a wider audience and to tell them a little about the places they came from too. Next time, I'll make more room in my suitcase.
(Photo by juantiagues via Flickr)
Article written by Chrystelle G.