Sherman, our motorhome, shivering in the snow. Photo taken October 27, 2016.
Where are Kevin and Ruth right now? Osgoode, Ontario, Canada. Just south of Ottawa.

And where are they going next? We leave November 1st for a six week trip to Romania and Moldova.

Saturday, September 5, 2015

A Taste of Spanish Wine

Spanish wines have always been a favourite with people travelling around Europe, and with good reason; they produce beautiful wines that are not only tasty and easily accessible, but are also much more affordable than similar wines from more-established wine destinations, such as France.

If you want to discover and fall in love with Spanish wine, the most enjoyable way is to explore the different flavours of the country is to go on a trip to Spain. You can travel with a tour operators that specialise in taking tourists to the wine-making regions of the country. These tours can take you to the biggest and most popular vineyards, as well as smaller, more traditional vineyards. However, if you're not planning a winery tour any time soon, then you can find a lot of good quality Spanish wines for reasonable prices at retailers like Tesco.

Officially, there are a very impressive 69 regions within Spain that produce wine, and as a whole, the country is recognized as being the third-biggest wine producing country in the world, after France and Italy. With so many wines on offer, here is a quick rundown of three of the most popular.


Did you know that one of the most famous sparkling wines on the planet is from Spain? Surprisingly, a lot of people don’t. If you love Cava, and want to try it in its native Spain then you must head to the northeast of the country. This wine uses a mixture of Xarel-lo, Parellada and Macabeo grapes and can be either white or blush.


Probably one of the most famous Spanish wines, Rioja is made in north-central Spain and comes in two different styles; traditional and modern. Traditional Rioja is aged in American oak barrels, which give it a subtle hint of coconut and dill to it, while modern Rioja is aged in French oak barrels, which creates a sweeter wine that carries hints of vanilla, and even, spice.

Image by David McSpadden used under the Creative Commons license.


It is in Basque country on the northern coast, where you will find a crisp, citrus-y wine called Txakoli (pronounced chalk-oh-lee, to the uninitiated). This wine has a low alcohol content compared to other Spanish wines, thanks to the Hondarribi Zuri grape, which is used to make a spritz for the wine and it also comes in blush, which tastes like watermelon.

Spanish wine is a real joy to try whilst you’re on vacation in the country (or to indulge in when you get back), and with so many different regions to explore and lots and lots of unique wines to try, why not look into a wine tour, or going on a wine course whilst you’re in Spain? These tours can last an afternoon, or a couple of days and can give you lots of essential knowledge that will help you choose the perfect Spanish wine for you.


  1. I love Cava! Bubbles are always fun. Cava is a very nice alternative to proper champagne and usually much more affordable. Cheers - Ellen

    1. We actually prefer a dry white more but it's always nice so have some bubbles especially something that is easier on the pocketbook that champagne.

  2. Spanish wines are named for the regions they are produced in rather than the type of grape used. Here wines are called Merlot, Cabernet, Chardonnay, etc. regardless of where they are produced. It takes a little getting used to the differences. But as you point out, Spanish wines are delicious and good value for the money.

    1. France also names their wines after regions if I am not mistaken and some of those regions have now been tradmarked so other producers are not allowed to call their wines after them. We love the good value for the money part! :-)


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