Andalusian wines, from the grape to the glass

Whether you are an aficionado of fine wine or an amateur simply looking to increase your wine knowledge, Andalucia is definitely the place for you.

Wine in Andalucia has come a long way since the Phoenicians first planted vineyards in the fertile Cadiz area in 1100 BC. By the time of the Romans, wine was being made in Andalucia in a big way and the activity has continued ever since. Wine was appreciated even during the centuries of Moorish domination. The Koran frowns on the consumption of alcohol, but the Moors made wine and imbedded it for “medicinal” purposes. From the 15th century onwards, Andalusian wines were shipped to appreciative drinkers elsewhere in Europe, particularly England, where there was a great fondness for Sack (as Sherry was called) and sweet wines from Málaga.

 

This happy situation prevailed until the 19th century when European vineyards were affected by the fungus oidium, followed by an even more devastating plague of Phylloxera, the American vine root louse, which first appeared in Bordeaux in 1868 and spread to South Spain 20 years later. Most  wine areas were replanted with plague-resistantAmerican rootstock, but some others never fully recovered.

 

From the historic sherries of Jerez, to the up-and-coming new vineyards in Ronda and Granada province, Andalucia boasts numerous top-quality wines.

 

There are over 40.000 hectaresof vineyards in Andalucia planted in 20 regions. Over half of the wine is produced in 4 major ‘Denominación de Origen’ (D.O. areas or the equivalent to France’s Appellation d’OrigineControllée)

Jérez, Cádiz province

Famous and worldwide known for its sherry aged wines in all its varieties: fino, amontillado, oloroso, palocortao.

Málaga and Sierras de Málaga

Traditionally known for the sweet Málaga desert wines.

Only about a decade ago a handful of innovative vintners started producing interesting red table wines in the Ronda mountains.

Montilla-Moriles, Córdoba province

Traditionally sweet desert wines from the variety Pedro Ximenez (PX) and dry white wines very similar in the aging process to the sherry types from Jerez. Nowadays this region also produces a wider range of other white and redvarieties.

Condado de Huelva

A selection of dry and sweet white wines from Huelva province.

In addition to the above, there are 16 other regions called ‘Vinos de la tierra’  which is a certified  step below DO on the Spanish wine qualityladder.

Andalucia is slowly becoming revered worldwide as an important center for wine-lovers. To use the words of American wine guru Robert Parker: “Andalucia is one of the key regions to watch.”

On our Wine Tours, you will experience the real essence of Andalucia, its true taste, its unique smell and distinctive flavor. We will take you to small boutique wineries, all run by local families who are passionate about the miracle process of winemaking. You will have the opportunity to start the visit in the vineyards and end it at the cellar for the most authentic grape to glass tasting. Our exclusive wine tours can be completed with very interesting culinary experiences such as home-made pairing lunches or hands-on cooking sessions.

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