Few other regions can field such a fascinating range of red wine styles, made from a broad palette of native grape varieties, reports Pedro Ballesteros Torres MW...
Most tourists know the dry Spain, which extends along the Mediterranean coast and the high Castilian plateau. The high mountains that run east to west across the north of the country – the Pyrenees and Cantabrian ranges – prevent the heavy Atlantic rains reaching the dry Spain, but also keep the regions to the north of them in a particularly humid and mild climate.
Asturias, Cantabria, Galicia and the northern part of the Basque country are the Green Spain.
Until recently, they were irrelevant as far as the production of quality red wine is concerned. But the aggregated effect of scientific developments in viticulture and oenology, climate change, a resurgence of the perceived value of indigenous varieties and a market eager to reward niche identities resulted in a new area for fine red wines.