Spain proudly claims the title of the third largest wine producer in the world. It’s prized region,Ribera del Duero, was named Wine Region of the Year 2012 by the prestigious Wine Enthusiast Magazine.
Grapes were first cultivated in Spain between 4000 and 3000 BC. Under Roman rule, Spanish wine was widely exported and traded. Spanish wine laws created the prestigious Denominación de Origen (DO) system in 1932 and were later revised in 1970.
Spain’s dry, infertile soil is key to its winegrowing success and fantastic array of native grape varieties, including the reds Tempranillo, Garnacha, and Monastrell; the whites Albariño from Galicia, Palomino, Airen, and Macabeo; and the three cava grapes Parellada, Xarel•lo, and Macabeo.
Spain’s Codorníu is the world's oldest and second-largest producer of bottle-fermented sparkling wine, known as cava, made by the traditional champagne method and it was impressively founded in Barcelona in 1551.
North of Madrid, the famed Ribera De Duero is undoubtedly Spain’s most dynamic wine- regions producing exceptionally well-aging fine wines.Viticulture in this region can be traced back to the Benedictine Monks from Cluny in the twelfth century. Its designation was granted July 21,1982. With a hot and dry climate and largely limestone soils, the Tempranillo grape reaches renowned heights here. Famous for high-quality red wines, Ribera Del Duero’s is often credited with igniting world interest in Spanish fine wines.
The legendary Vega Sicillia is the dominant wine producer of the region. Founded in 1864 by Don EloyLecanda y Chaves, who arrived from Bordeaux with precious cuttings of local grapes and planted them together with Spain's prized signature grape Tinto Fino in the dry Ribera soils.Today Vega Sicilia's luxury wines arerecognized worldwide as some of the finest and most valued red wines on the market.Alejandro Fernández’s Pesquera, composed entirely of Tempranillo grapes, has also earned international reputation. Other fine wine producers include Condado de Haza, Bodegas Mauro, Viña Pedrosa, and Bodegas Téofilo Reyes.
Rioja is another flagship region of Spanish winemaking, producing both red and white wine. Some famous producers include;Luis Cañas, Muga, BaigorriYsios (designed by Spain’s famous architect Santiago Calatrava) and the unsurpassable Marqués de Murrieta.
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