The Almansa DO is located in central Spain, in an area known as the Meseta (the city of Toledo is not far away), in the province of Albacete (Castile-La Mancha). While there are 18,000 acres of vines planted here, there are very few producers. Vineyards are planted at elevations of 2500 feet; rainfall is scarce and summers can be very hot. Soils are lime-bearing and are rather poor. Leading varieties are Monastrell, Tempranillo, Garnacha, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, while the most widely planted whites are Chardonnay, Verdejo and Sauvignon Blanc. The best reds are identified much like Rioja; crianza is aged for a minimum of 6 months in wood, Reserva for a minimum of 12 months in barrique and a Gran Reserva for at least 24 months in barrique. (Wine/Appellations)