Ribera del Duero Wine Regions and Tours
If you have never heard about Spain’s Ribera del Duero wine region you are missing something special. You’ll not only find bold red wines and fruity rosé here, but you’ll also discover a true gem in terms of nature, history, and architecture.
In the below guide, you’ll find useful info about this beautiful region, its wines, and what to see. Vamos!
Where To Find The Ribera del Duero Region
Ribera del Duero is situated in the Duero Valley in the northern part of Spain and covers the area of Burgos, Soria, Segovia, and Valladolid. The area is surrounded by mountains and with no maritime influence with hot and dry summers and cold winters.
When you visit the area, you’ll notice that most vineyards are planted in the highest part of the region so that they can benefit from cool temperatures during the night. This climate helps the grape retain fruit flavors and acidity which you’ll find in the wines from this region which are primarily red and rosé.
About the Ribera del Duero Wine Region
Ribera del Duero is one of the most important wine regions in Spain and has its own D.O., i.e. Denominación de Origen. The most widely used grape is Tinto Fino or Tempranillo with is used to produce high-tannic red wine dark in color. You’ll not only find Tinto Fino in purity, i.e. made entirely from it, but blends as well. The most common grapes are Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and, Malbec. For rosé wines, mostly dry, Garnacha is sometimes used.
In recent years the predominant winemaking style is to produce wine with concentrated fruit flavors and tannins, that are aged for a short amount of time in new oak barrels to add extra complexity to the wines. In case you are wondering, there’s a wide selection of high-quality wineries. I’ve listed here for you some of my favorites
- Bodegas Casajús
- Bodegas Emilio Moro
- Abadia Retuerta
- Vega Sicilia
- Bodegas y Viñedos Linaje Garsea
- Bodegas Portia
The region offers quite a lot in terms of history too, like the beautiful 13th-century Gothic Cathedral in Burgos. You’ll find below two one-day tours recommendation so that you can make the most of your time.
Taking a Day Trip to Ribera del Duero
Whether you have based in Ribera del Duero area or you are in Madrid for a weekend you have several options available to you. Prices range from €180 to €300.
You have as well the possibility to choose between a private or group tour in case you are traveling alone or with friends. Most of the time you’ll get a direct pick-up at your hotel. A couple of things to know here are that a private tour will be more expensive than a group tour and that a group tour, although it’s not outrageously more expensive.
The second thing to remember is that for group tours a minimum number of participants is required and as such cancellations might happen. The length of the tour will be approximately 10 to 11 hours with a professional guide who will know the ins and outs of the Ribera del Duero area.
You’ll usually visit up to 3 known wineries in the area where you’ll have the opportunity to taste a minimum of two wines per winery guided by wine experts. Depending on the provider of the tour you’ll either have lunch at a local restaurant or snacks. In the latter case expect to have some dedicated time for your lunch, although it’s not usually a lot.
Luxury Day Trip to Ribera del Duero
If you want to treat yourself I highly recommend this luxury one-day trip private tour to Ribera del Duero. Price wise expect between €300 to €400.
Being a luxury private tour, pick-up will be at your hotel with a luxury vehicle. The idea here is to focus more on quality rather than quantity. You’ll usually visit only two wineries, although these are usually some of the most famous like Abadia Retuerta and the like.
The trip I took, for example, had an initial stop in Segovia for a coffee break where the guide will talk you through the history and architecture of the place.
Our first winery was Vega Sicilia in our case, where we had three of their best wines properly explained by one of their experts.
We then headed to the second winery, Abadia Retuerta, where we had a guided tour of the vineyards first and then a guided wine tasting with three of their best wines.
We finally had a Spanish traditional lunch in a high-quality restaurant next to the Duero River that was truly memorable.
Ribera del Duero has really a lot to offer and as we have seen it can be easily reached from Madrid with daily trips. I strongly recommend the area for those of you who love bold red wines and rosé, as you’ll find great bottles here. Even if you are less into wine and more into nature or architecture, you’ll still find plenty of things to do here, from walks along the Duero river to visits to the Peñafiel castle.
I hope you have found the before-mentioned tips useful to organize your next wine tour around Ribera del Duero. Have fun!
About the Author: Chiara Gomiero is the founder and writer at handywineguide.com. Her mission? Simple, make the world of wine more accessible to you and by doing so enhance your experience.
Image Source: Wikimedia Commons by Ruta del Vino Ribera del Duero