Ordering wine in a spanish restaurant

Imagine, this is your first time in Spain and you want to order wine… Well, where should I start? Take a pen and note down these tips.

Depending on what part of Spain you are, usually there is an endless list of wines.
Unfortunately some waiters don´t have good knowledge of the English language and cannot suggest a suitable wine for a foreigner. Firstly, think about your budget, if it is not limited, of course you have more options; however, there are fantastic value for money products and you don´t need to spend a fortune on a wine.

Don´t take a risk and start with a glass of wine, there are less options but if you don´t like it, you can change the wine easily.

Then, think about your preference:

Do you like white, rosé or red wine? Of course all of us know international grapes as Chardonnay or Cabernet Sauvignon, but try to give local grapes a chance such as Airen, Verdejo, Garnacha, Tempranillo. You can discover a new favorite wine if you choose any of these grapes.

Do you like young or aged wine? Young wines are called “Joven” – without barrel aging and then there are separated into Roble (a few month of barrel), Crianza (at least 6 month of aging in oak and 1 year of bottle), Reserva (36 months of aging, at least 12 months in barrel) and Gran Reserva (60 months, minimum 18 months in barrel).

What classification of quality are the most common in Spain?

Table wine – basic wine, it is not necessary to show on the label vintage or grape variety.

IGP – wine made in a specific region following some restriction on grapes and wine making.

DO – high quality wines limited with strict wine making regulation.

DOC – only for Rioja and Priorat wines.

Vino de Pago – the highest category according to Spanish wine law. It is a DOP reserved for those few wineries and vineyards which carry out the whole process –from the grape to the bottle– within the limits of the Pago or estate. The unique location, soil and climate are the key to obtaining exceptional wines.

Now you have the most important tips about choosing a Spanish wine, let´s try!