About Spanish Wine

About Spanish Wine
Spain today ranks as the third largest wine producing nation, trailing only France and Italy in the category. Vineyards are planted in numerous regions throughout the country and recently tens of thousands of acres have been planted in the La Mancha region, not far from Madrid in the middle of Spain.

There are many different types of Spanish wines, ranging from the highly popular and enjoyable sparkling wines known as Cava; these well made wines are reasonably priced. Albariño, a dry, aromatic white from northwestern Spain, has become very popular in the US market, especially as a food wine with Asian or fusion cuisine.

Of course, Spain is best known for its red wines. Historically the most famous and highly regarded reds have been from Rioja, but as of late reds from Ribera del Duero and Priorat have helped boost Spain's identity as a country of superior red wines.

Finally, there are sherries of exceptional quality in various degrees of dryness and sweetness; these are among the world's greatest and most popular fortified wines.

Top Picks for Spain

Grifoll Declara 2016 Red Blend Priorat
94 points
Deep purple color. Aromas and flavors of lingonberry, savory herbs, powdery florals, earth, and dried mint with a slightly chewy, crisp, dryish light-to-medium body and a smooth, very complex, long finish evoking accents of almond and rose water with crunchy tannins and moderate oak flavor. A delicious red from Priorat with riveting twists and turns; new nuances to discover around every corner.
Licenciado 2014 Riserva Tempranillo
94 points
Dusty garnet color. Aromas and flavors of dried berries and prickly pears with caramel, leather bound book, cornichon, and cactus blossoms with a bright, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a complex, long finish displaying notes of black raspberry with cocoa, slate, and roasted beets and parsnips with light oak flavor. A complex and seductive Rioja that reveals the depth of its charm after patient aeration.
Emina Pasión 2016  Tempranillo
94 points
Best Buy
Medium ruby black color. Aromas of serrano ham, root beer, cocoa dusted hazelnut gelato, sweet paprika, and huckleberry with a slightly chewy, crisp, dry full body and a complex, long dusty leather, fruit leather, apricot stones, dried tobacco leaf, and granite finish with dusty tannins and moderate oak flavor. A fortress of rich deep fruit with walls of tannin flanked by an army of acid; the smoke of battle lingers.
94 points $19.99 Best Buy
Kirkland Signature 2012 Gran Reserva Ribera del Duero
93 points
Best Buy
Deep purple color. Aromas and flavors of blistered tomatoes, olives, saffron, and beets with a soft, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a medium-length finish with medium tannins and light oak flavor. An earthy Ribera del Duero with an assertive, complex character.
93 points $13.99 Best Buy
Leyenda NV Pedro Ximenez Sherry Jerez de la Frontera
93 points
Violet color. Aromas and flavors of mashed raisins and prunes and chocolate nuts with a bright, sweet medium-full body and a subtle, long finish that presents notes of fig paste, mincemeat pie, and baklava with no oak flavor. A rich and toothsome PX Sherry with great length and depth.
93 points $18.99
Grifoll Declara 2016 Can Maurisset Red Blend Priorat
92 points
Ruby color. Aromas of chocolate, black tea, mallow, and cedar with a round, vibrant, fruity medium-full body and a tingling, elegant, medium-long celery leaf, cinnamon-dusted prune, granite, and sea salt finish with light oak flavor. A firm and steady Priorat with scintillating minerality and spicy intrigue.
Princesa NV Brut Nature Cava DO
92 points
Best Buy
Gold color. Floral, inviting aromas of candied meyer lemon, yuzu marmalade, candied pineapple, sweet basil, and salted parker roll with a velvety, vibrant, finely carbonated, fruity medium body and a smooth, intriguing, medium-long creme brulee, sunflower, and pastry crust finish with light oak flavor. A richly structured sparkler that will stand the test of time.
92 points $16.99 Best Buy
Barons Creek Vineyards 2017 Campeon Red Blend Montsant
91 points
Indigo color. Inviting aromas and flavors of chocolate peanut brittle, cherry gastrique, fruit leather, and cajeta with a satiny, bright, fruity medium-to-full body and a smooth, intriguing, medium-long finish manifesting notes of ruby port, hibiscus spiced apple, nuts, and cedar with fine, chewy tannins and light oak flavor. A big, chewy Spanish red with a lot of fruit and attractive oxidative notes.
Gran Barón NV Brut Bio Cava DO
90 points
Best Buy
Golden straw color. Aromas and flavors of ripe tangerine, chamomile, honey, dried peach, caramel, and straw with a silky, vibrant, finely carbonated, dryish light body and a smooth, interesting, medium-length finish revealing nuances of toasted almond croissant with crunchy tannins and light oak flavor. A palate-pleasing Cava.
90 points $14.95 Best Buy
Velata NV Premium Sangria
90 points
Best Buy
Bright dark ruby color. Spicy aromas and flavors of cinnamon, ripe raspberry, candied ginger, eucalyptus, and orange zest with a satiny, vibrant, moderately sweet medium body and a graceful, complex, medium-long finish with crunchy tannins and moderate oak flavor. A great bottled sangria; balanced, spicy, pure, with a great kiss of chewy tannins; a resounding YES from the panel.
90 points $9.99 Best Buy