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What is the top Spanish grape variety; also the most planted wine grape variety in the world?

Airen; an undistinguished white variety used primarily for making brandy and commercial bulk wine.


What is the most prevalent red grape in Spain?



What are 7 synonyms for Tempranillo?

Tinta de Toro (Toro), Tinta del Pais (Ribera del Duero, Cigales), Ull de Llebre (Catalonia), Cencibel (La Mancha, Valdepenas), Aragonez (Portugal), Tinta Ririz (Douro in Portugal), Valdepenas (California)


What two grapes are regionally based in Sherry?

Palomino and Pedro Ximenez


What two grapes are regionally based in Cava?

Parellada and Xarel-lo


What grape is regionally based in Rias Baixas?



What two well-respected grape varieties are found in Spain but known in France as Grenache and Mourvedre?

Garnacha and Monastrell


What was the first region designated as a DO and the first one elevated to DOCa?



What are the three subregions of Rioja?

Rioja Alta: the high altitude, hilly area covering most of the western half of the region.
Rioja Alavesa: essentially the part of the Rioja Alta north of the Ebro
Rioja Baja: the lower, flatter, eastern part of Rioja


What grape variety covers well over 90% of the vineyard area in Rioja?

Red varieties; tempranillo takes up most of that. Other permitted red grapes are Garnacha, Mazuelo (also known as Carineno or Carignan) and Graciano. White = Viura (Macabeo everywhere else in spain), Malvasia and Garnacha Bianca, Chard and Sav Blanc.


What is the Rioja region most famous for?

Though they make white and rosado (rose), Rioja is most famous for red wine.


What historical incident propelled Rioja into the winemaking world?

When phylloxera hit in the late 19th century, Bordeaux winemakers settled here after their own vineyards had been destroyed.


What must white Rioja's contain?

A minimum of 51% Viura. They are usually cold-fermented and released young, but there are a handful of oak-aged and barrel-fermented examples.


Where is Cava mainly produced?

In the Penedes region of the Catalonia in northeastern Spain.


Who is legally authorized to make sparkling wine under the name Cava?

160 municipalities


What are the three classic grape varieties for Cava?

Macabeo (Rioja's Viura), Xarel-lo and Parellada


What winemaking process is used to produce Cava?

the traditional method


Ranging from driest to sweetest, Cava is classified as:

brut nature, extra brut, brut, seco (dry), semi-seco (semi-dry), dulce (sweet). About half of production is brut.


What 3 soil types are found in the Jerez region and which grape variety has an affinity for each?

Palomino prefers the white "albariza" soil, composed of about 30% chalk along with some clay and sand. Pedro Ximenez grows well on "barro" a clay soil with iron oxide and a little chalk and sand. The Moscatel thrives on "arena", sand.


What three grapes are authorized for the production of Sherry DO?

Palomino, Pedro Ximenez, and Moscatel


What style of Sherry matches this description: pale, delicate, and dry, showing the unmistakable influence of flor yeast?



What style of Sherry matches this description: golden or brownish, sweet or dry, with considerable oxidation and no flor aromas?



What style of Sherry matches this description: older fino with rich, nutty characteristics that develop after the flor has died?



The best known wines from "Green Spain" come from what DO?

Rias Baixas, a single DO broken up into five discontinuous subregions.


What is Galicia known for?

Known as "Green Spain"; produce dry, fragrant white wine with high acidity made from the Albarino grape.


What three DOs are found in Galicia?

Rias Baixas, Ribeiro, and Valderorras


Where is Toro located and what does it produce?

In the Duero Valley and it makes primarily red wine from Tempranillo, which is locally called Tinta de Toro. White and rosado are also produced.


What changed in 2008 regarding Rueda?

Rueda was a DO in the Duero Valley for white wines only; however, it now allows red and rosado wines made from Tempranillo, Cab Sav, Garnacha, Merlot, and other local varieties. (Though red still only comprise about 5% of Rueda's wines)


What does Cigales, of the Duero Valley, mainly produce?

Reds and roses from Tempranillo, here known as Tinta del Pais, with Garnacha as a frequent blending variety in the rosados.


Which region in the Duero Valley is known for being "on par" with Rioja for the quality of its red wines?

Ribera del Duero where the principal grape is again Tinta del Pail (Tempranillo).


Which region has vineyards among the highest in elevation in Spain (around 2,500 feet)?

Ribera del Duero


Which region is historically famous for its roasados and lies between La Rioja and the French border in the northeast of Spain?

Navarra DO


Which DO in the foothills of the Pyrenees has developed a reputation for modern-style red wines, with plantings of Cab Sav and Merlot outnumbering Tempranillo?

Somontano DO


What province of Spain is the largest producer of quality wine in the country?



Which DO covers the entire autonomous region of Catalonia and is credited as a reason for this province accounting for more than 20% of Spain's DO level wine?

Catalunya DO which has a relatively cool Mediterranean climate, providing good growing conditions and fewer challenges to producing quality grapes than in many other parts of Spain.


What are four DOs "of distinction" located in Catalonia (other than Catalunya DO)?

Priorat, Montsant, Costers del Segre, Penedes


Which is the only DO in Catalonia that focuses on white wines?

Penedes DO


What DO encompasses the main production area for Cava as well as nonsparkling whites made from the Cava grapes - Xarel-lo, Parellada, and Macabeo?

Penedes DO


What is the primary region of wine production in Spain? Responsible for almost half of the country's wine?

Castile-La Mancha, in the central Meseta. It is the home of the vast acreage of Airen grapes.


What is Castile-La Mancha's largest DO? What is their main red and white grape?

La Mancha DO; physically the largest but with a comparatively small output. Airen = white, Cencibal (Tempranillo) = red


Which DO is surrounded by the La Mancha DO and carries a slightly better reputation?

Valdepenas DO


What are areas to watch in the Castile-La Mancha area now that Spain has adopted the concept of vino de pago as a means of recognizing individual outstanding producers in otherwise underperforming areas?

Alicante, Valencia, and Jumilla; all of whom benefit from their proximity to the Mediterranean.


What is an important red grape variety along the Mediterranean coast?

Monastrell (Mourvedre)


Spain has the largest grape acreage in the world: True or False?

True, however most of the grapes grown are Airen which is primarilly used for brandy.


What mountain range separates Spain from France?

The Pyrenees


What is the climate in Spain?

Mostly continental (hot summers, cold winters, rainfall fairly evenly spread throughout the year) despite being nearly surrounded by water. This is because of the network of mountains that block much of the maritime influence.


What is the only part of Spain to have a truly maritime climate?

The relatively exposed northwest corner of the country (Galicia, also known as Green Spain)


What areas of Spain have a classic Mediterranean climate?

The southwest and Mediterranean coast


What countries occupy the Iberan Penninsula?

Spain and Portugal