Spanish Wines in Our Glass

The corona destroyed all the wine stories. No gatherings, no wine presentations. It's an opportunity to recall some of our previous tastes and smells. Do people drink Spanish Wines in Croatia? They are drunk in small, limited quantities, mostly by winegrowers who want their palates to feel the breath and spirit of other wine regions. Every year, the Embassy of Kingdom of Spain in Zagreb organizes a wine workshop for journalists and wine merchants. The last one featured 18 wines, of which only five are on our market.

It started with Parxet brut Reserve Cava with 11.5% alcohol followed by another white Bodegas Martin Codax wine, followed by other wines from which Bodegas Valdemar from the Rioja region was made from tempranillo (70%), graciana (15%) and prom (15%) with 14% alcohol, located in the Zagreb wine store Miva. White wine in a specially designed Raventos Codorniu bottle of Chardonnay (70%), Parellade (15%) and Macabeu (15%) with 11.5% alcohol is imported by D, Avgvsta Impex. In Vrutak, Gonzalez Byass (Rioja) wines of tempranilla (95%), graciana (4%) and mazuel (1%) with 14% alcohol, Bodegas Felix Callejo of tinto (95%) and albillo (5%) and sherry Gonzalez Byass Cristina Medium (Jerez-Xerex-Sherry) with 87% Palomino and 13% Pedro Jimenez with alcohol 17.5%.

Spain is the world's largest wine country with the most vineyards in the world. It has one million 21,000 hectares of vineyards, France 790,000 and Italy 690,000. In addition to tempranillo, it is very popular with black varieties and garnacha tinto, which are either mixed or worked separately then graciano, mazuelo, but also have cabernet sauvignon, syrah and even merlot. In the Rueda area there are verdejo, tempranillo, palomino, albillo but there are also sauvignon and chardonnay. The label guaranteeing premium Denominación de Origen (DO) wines has 66 Spanish wine regions and there is also the Denominación de Origen Calificada (DOCa) label for the regions with the best wines. The two most famous wine-growing areas of Spain are Rioja and Priorat. Also known is Ribera del Duero, a region where mainly red wines of the Tempranillo variety are produced.

Catalonia is known for producing sparkling Cava wine and the Jerez region for sherry. The Spanish sherry is made in Andalusia in the vicinity of Jerez de la Frontera, and is labeled -Jerez DO (Denominacion de Origen) on the bottles. Sherry is made from white wine (palomino, pedro ximenez and moscatel), which is “fortified” with brandy after fermentation. In order to be considered "sherry", the wine must come from the area between the cities of Jerez de la Frontera, Sanlúcar de Barrameda and El Puerto de Santa María in the province of Cádiz.

Spain has more than 600 indigenous grape varieties, but most of the production is tempranillo, garnache, albariño and verdejo and international varieties such as cabernet sauvignon, chardonnay, syrah, merlot and sauvignon blanc, and the white airen variety is also cultivated. In Spain, it is cultivated on 1/3 of all vineyards, on about 400,000 ha, mostly in the central part of the country (especially in the Mancha and Valdepenas areas). It is vinified separately or together with red grapes. Photos by: Julio Frangen

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