Spanish Wine & Portuguese Wine: Types, Regions & Brands

Spanish Wine?

Spain is the third-largest wine producer in the world and has the largest land area dedicated to vineyards of any other country.

Some new Spanish winemakers employ modern technology and introduce classic grape varieties along with native grapes to produce a wide range of wines.

Traditionally, Spanish wines were oak-aged for long periods, but today, wine producers use temperature-controlled stainless steel containers with no or little oak aging to produce lighter, more fruity wines. It is an affordable substitute for expensive wines from France and other countries.

Types of Spanish Wine

Spanish wine classification is based on the French appellation system, which not only identifies the specific area of production and the grapes used but also the minimum aging period that is applied to all Spanish wines.

The best Spanish wines are as follows:

  • Vino de Mesa
  • Denominacíon de Origen
  • Vino de la Tierra
  • Vino Joven or sin Crianz
  • Crianza
  • Reserva
  • Gran Reserva

Spanish Wine Regions

There are many demarcated areas for winemaking. The following are some of the well-known wine-producing areas of Spain:

  • Rioja
  • Rioja Alta
  • Rioja Alavesa
  • Rioja Baja
  • Crianza
  • Reserva
  • Gran Reserva
  • Penedés
  • Priorato
  • Costers del Segre
  • Ribera del Duero
  • Rueda
  • Galicia
  • Ribeiro
  • Rias Baixas
  • La Mancha
  • Valdepeñas
  • Valencia
  • Alicante
  • Montilla-Moriles
  • Navarra
  • Alella
  • Jerez
  • Malaga

Lable Language of Spanish Wine

The following are the terms used on Spanish wine labels:

  • Avocado.
  • Clarete.
  • Brut.
  • Brut Nature.
  • Dulce.
  • Seco.
  • Semi Seco.
  • Elaborado Por.
  • Generoso.
  • Graves.
  • Joven.
  • Rancio.
  • Vino.
  • Tinto.
  • Rosado.
  • Vino Gasificado.
  • Cava.
  • CVC.
  • Sin Cosecha.
  • Espumosos.
  • Aguja.
  • Very dry.
  • Dry.
  • Light.
  • Sweet.
  • Bottled by.
  • Young.
  • Wine.
  • Red.
  • Pink Rosé.
  • Non-vintage.
  • Sparkling.
  • A young wine with a prickling sensation.

Portuguese Wine or Portugal Wine

Portugal is best known for its Fortified wines, and port. Apart from Port, it is also known for its Pink & Rose, Lancers, and Vinho Verde.

The Methuen Treaty of 1703 popularized Portuguese wines in the UK. Traditionally, Portuguese wines are made using native grapes, and the wine is aged in wood for a long time.

However, in modern days, big wine firms are experimenting with new styles of wines by introducing different blends of grapes, cool fermentation, and different wood and lengths of time for aging. Most of Portugal’s vineyards are under the control of cooperatives.

Wine Regions of Portugal

  • Minho
  • Douro
  • Dao
  • Bairrada
  • Beira
  • Alentejo
  • Setúbal
  • Colares


Spain is the third-largest wine producer in the world, having more acres of vineyards than any other country. It is known for its sherry and red wine from Rioja.

The wines are classified according to the French system, and there is a legal minimum requirement of aging for different styles for all Spanish wines.

Portugal is known for its pink and pétillant Mateus Rosé, Lancers, and Vinho Verde, other than Port. Most of the vineyards are under the control of cooperatives.

Spanish and Portuguese wines are made traditionally using native grapes and aged in wood for a long time. There are many traditional winemakers who still believe in the traditional method of making wine.

Spanish table wines are well-known in the global market compared to Portuguese wines. The wines of Spain and Portugal are affordable, and many of them are excellent.

Dipayan Mondal
Dipayan Mondal

Dipayan is the author of this blog. He completed his hotel management degree from GNIHM, Kolkata. And he is very passionate about the hospitality industry. And right now, he is working as a successful hotelier in a 5-star hotel.