Wine buyers and sommeliers always ask the same question: how did a country once obsessed with the color red become renowned for producing superlative white wines? Was it massive investment from overseas, Spanish derring-do, sheer luck – witchcraft? The answer is probably all of the above (bar sorcery!) But whatever the catalyst for this unprecedented […]
Winegrowers are a sentimental bunch – they often lead with their heart, throwing caution to the wind. Take Caíño Blanco, for instance. This obscure white grape was on the verge of extinction in the 20th century, unloved – and undesired – by most producers in Galicia. With varieties like Albariño and Godello starting to make waves in […]
Catalunya, as any self-respecting citizen will tell you, “is not Spain.” Indeed, Catalans have long felt a disconnect from mainstream Castilian culture, boasting their own language, customs, and distinct identity. Any visitor to the region’s glorious capital, Barcelona, can feel it in the air. From politics to gastronomy, Catalunya dances to its own tune. So, […]
The Galicians refer to this little-known grape as Loureira. The Portuguese, meanwhile, stick with Loureiro. But regardless of cultural traditions, Loureiro translates as “laurel” in both languages. It refers to the unmistakably pungent aroma that invokes the smell of freshly picked bay leaves taken from the laurel tree that morning. Yet Loureiro is perhaps one […]
How should we define the role of white varieties like Treixadura? From one perspective, the grape occupies a very ignoble space in the winemaking culture of Galicia; Treixadura was traditionally used as a relatively small part of a constituent blend, rarely championed as a standalone varietal. The reason for this long-standing relegation is not entirely […]
We have good news: Hondarrabi Zuri only very occasionally appears on wine labels. Gracias a Dios. For who could hope to pronounce this tongue twister of a grape variety – imagine being in a noisy tapas bar in San Sebastian and trying to shout over the din! Prolific across the exquisitely beautiful Basque Country, Hondarrabi […]
Malvasía de Rioja is part of a very special family of Vitis Vinifera. According to the OIV (International Organisation of Vine and Wine), there are at least 70 different genetic variations or sub-varieties of the Malvasía grape cultivated across Europe. Today, Malvasía is grown in locations as diverse as the Canary Islands, Rioja, Douro Valley, […]
The most prolific grape variety in northeast Spain is adaptable, versatile, and widely loved by growers. Viura, or Macabeo as it’s known in Catalunya, is responsible for a multitude of wine styles. It has traditionally been used in the Rioja region to make long-aged and oxidative white wines, typified by the splendid cuvées of Lopez […]
Sherry is the ultimate paradox of Spanish fine wine. It is an iconic and world-renowned style that relies upon and indeed requires second-rate raw materials. Therefore, the criteria for inclusion are strict: Grapes must be relatively straightforward to grow and produce a generous yield. The berries must have low acidity and high pH. A neutral […]
Pedro Ximénez (PX) is responsible for producing some of the sweetest, most gloriously hedonistic dessert wines available today. In Jerez de la Frontera, grapes are left to raisin on grass mats for many days, concentrating the sugars to mouth-coating levels. These potent raw materials are then transformed into PX sherry, a category with over 450 […]
The spectacularly beautiful vineyards of Rioja are renowned for producing velvety-smooth reds from the Tempranillo grape, cultivated in the Iberian Peninsula for centuries. But there are also obscure treasures in Rioja that, until relatively recently, remained hidden from the eyes of the world. Step forward, if you please, Tempranillo Blanco. This is perhaps Spain’s most […]
Xarel-lo has been synonymous with sparkling wine for centuries. Cultivated in the hills of Penedès (south of Barcelona), it contributes vital structure and acidity to Cava and other sparkling wine styles like Corpinnat and Penedès Classic. As far as the winemaking community is concerned, most, if not all, of Spain’s greatest and most authentic sparkling […]
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Cellar Tours is a Luxury Travel Specialist, operating since 2003 and offering exclusive Mercedes chauffeured Gourmet Vacations in Chile, France, Italy, Ireland, Portugal, South Africa, and Spain. We specialize in luxurious custom designed vacations, events and incentives related to food and wine. We are proud members of Slow Food, UNAV (Travel Agency Association in Spain), and the IACP (International Association of Culinary Professionals).