Touring these hotspots and sampling some of the best wines Europe has to offer as well as discovering the least known areas of Spain gives you an amazing opportunity to get to know the country at a much deeper level away from the costas.
And getting away from the beaten track would certainly help you develop your Spanish in an authentic way 🙌
If you enjoy exploring Spain and are a wine lover… I’m sure you’ll love this!
Most people know about Rioja wines, but not so many people are aware of other less known ones (here in the UK) which are truly outstanding as well.
In fact, the best voted vino tinto (not rojo!) in Spain in 2020 was a Ribera de Duero... But what is Ribera de Duero?
River "Duero" goes across Northern Spain and its “Ribera” (the land next to the river) produces fantastic red wines. These wines are deeply colored, more intense black fruit character, fuller bodied and with a higher level of alcohol, than those from Rioja.
Tasting great wines and visiting wineries is one of the top activities to do in this area. But not only that, the region’s cuisine is great, specialising in cordero asado (roasted lamb) in wood ovens cooked to perfection.
Ribera de Duero has many picturesque villages with plenty of historical heritage and monumental churches, palaces and castles.
Spend a few days in this area and you’ll certainly feel like you’ve gone back in time!
In the province of Cádiz, Andalucía, the historic Jerez de la Frontera or simply Jerez is one of Andalucía’s most delightful towns.
This is the centre of Sherry production and the town is packed with bodegas.
Sherry is often stereotyped as a cooking wine or a sweet dessert wine. However, the world of sherry is truly diverse, and many varieties pair extremely well with food. In fact, Sherry wines have a lot of depth and it is worth getting to understand all its varieties, tastes, colours and textures.
As well as sherry, Jerez is also famous for horses, Flamenco music and dance.
So, if you want to get to know a bit more about the heart of Andalucía’s deep culture, head over to this area and enjoy its richness and charm.
In the most northern-westerly part of Spain, on the border with Portugal, the Rias Baixas region of Galicia is home to Albariño, a refreshing and fruity coastal white which goes particularly well with fish and seafood.
Galicia has a stronger resemblance to the green fields and rocky coasts of Ireland… rather than classic images of sunny and dry Spain! In fact, the Cantabrian coast is often referred to as Green Spain.
Idyllic uncrowded beaches, with long stretches of white sands and turquoise blue waters (albeit cold!), pretty villages, and excellent eating options (particularly the fantastic local seafood), this area is a must if you want to discover a very different part of Spain.
👉Fun fact about Albariño: The 1st Sunday of August is Albariño day!!
Cava lovers will definitely want to visit this region near Barcelona!
But it’s not only cava that it’s produced here. There's a wide diversity of wine styles covering dry, sweet and sparkling in all three colours! (tinto, blanco y rosado). In fact, this area also makes some highly regarded, oak-aged reds.
With incredible fresh Mediterranean food and stunning mountain and vineyard vistas, the Penedes region is a hidden gem to be explored, full of history and character.
If you can’t make it to Spain soon, you can always bring a little Spain to you! Why not try one of these varieties and research the area that most interests you ready for your next trip? 😉