Utiel Requena Do
The Utiel Requena DO of Spain is named for the two eponymous towns that are the heart of this zone. Winemaking here, near the town of Valencia, not far from the Mediterranean Coast, has been in existence since Roman times, and today there are 100,000 acres of vines, planted at elevations between 2000 and 3000 feet above sea level. The growing season is very hot, although at these elevations, temperatures drop dramatically at night.

The key grape here is Bobal, a red variety that proved resistant to phylloxera in the late 1800s. Bobal has a high degree of polyphenols, giving the wines deep violet color and full tannins. Bobal once accounted for 100% of the plantings, but today, those numbers have dwindled to 80%. Rosés are also made from Bobal, while the leading white variety is Tardana, which yields an aromatic wine with delicate tropical fruit flavors. (Wine/Appellations)