As everyone knows, Spain is one of Europe’s best wine-producing countries. In fact, every one of Spain’s 17 regions produces wine and there are 69 different denomination of origin wine regions within these. With over 4,000 wineries to choose from it can be difficult to know which to visit. But stick with us and we’ll show you our pick of the best wineries and vineyards to visit in Spain.
One of La Rioja’s oldest wineries, founded in 1858, Bodegas Marques de Riscal is a must-visit. Not only does it have years of history and experience in producing excellent wines, but it also features a futuristic hotel designed by Frank Gehry, who is also responsible for the celebrated Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao and a Michelin-starred restaurant. The winery produces more than three million bottles of red wine per year and can be visited on a guided tour.
Another of the famous La Rioja wineries is Bodegas Ysios. It too is known not only for its quality wines but for its unique design. It was designed by Santiago Calatrava and was created to mirror the undulation of the Cantabrian mountain range that frames it. Calatrava also designed the City of Arts and Sciences in Valencia.
If you want somewhere that makes cava (Spain’s answer to Champagne) as well as wine, then head to Cavas Freixenet in Catalunya. The old cellar here was built in 1922, and today the group owns 18 bodegas in seven countries across the world. Visitors can tour the winery on a group tour, booked in advance, to discover both the traditional process of cava-making as well as the more modern way using cutting-edge technology.
Dinastia Vivanco is not only one of La Rioja’s best wineries but it’s also a restaurant and excellent wine museum. Begin your visit here with a tour of the bodega, then browse the museum to learn all about the history of wine and how it’s made. End the tour with a visit to the ‘Wine Corner’, where you can taste a total of 14 different wines from the Vivanco collection. Why not stop by the restaurant and enjoy a delicious meal to round off your visit.
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Finca Villacreces is situated in the Ribera del Duero wine region, along the Golden Mile in the region of Castilla y León. It lies tucked in between rivers, ancient vineyards and pine forests and its vineyards cover 110 hectares. Wine has been made on the land here for many years, but the current winery dates back to 2004 and then was relaunched in 2007. The Villacreces tour costs 12 euros (around US$14) per person and includes cheese and chorizo as well as wine tastings.
The bodega Rey Fernando de Castilla is located in the south of Spain, in the historic centre of Jerez de la Frontera. Situated in the Sherry Triangle, it’s famous for its sherries and white wines, which are aged in new French and American oak barrels. It produces a range of pale, dry and elegant award-winning wines and sherries and also excellent vinegars. The bodega can be visited on a guided tour, which lasts one hour and explains the process of sherry-making as well as offering tastings.
Bodegas López de Heredia is another of the famous wineries in La Rioja, and the town of Haro to be precise. It’s an old vast wine complex, which is just as impressive above ground as it is below. The oldest parts of the winery are over 140 years old. Visit the winery on a guided tour to explore the vast maze of underground caverns filled with barrels. The bodega is well known for its Viña Tondonia, Bosconia Reserva and Gran Reserva wines.
Codorníu has been linked to a family of winegrowers dating all the way back to the 16th century. It is one of the oldest family companies in Spain and one of the oldest in the world. In 1872, Josep Raventós Fatjó made cava for the first time in Spain and the Codorníu brand became forever linked to this most famous of Catalan drinks. Then in 1895 Manuel Raventós hired the Modernist architect Josep Puig i Cadafalch to expand and redesign their winery, turning it into one of the most spectacular-looking wineries in the country. A visit includes a welcome to the Cathedral of Cava, an audiovisual tour, an art nouveau tour and an exhibit on the history and heritage of the Codorníu family.