Spain’s rosé regions
Spanish wine regions like Cigales and Navarra have a history in making rosé, but also winemakers in other regions show interest in rosados and claretes, like Rioja and Ribera del Duero.
Cigales specialised in rosados and claretes. These types are still by far the major part of the production here, using a mixture of red (tinta del país, garnacha, merlot and syrah), and white (albillo, verdejo and sauvignon blanc) grape varieties. Classic rosados are made from tinta del país, are full-bodied and have a deeper colour. The style is now juicier, with fresh ripe fruit and floral aromas.
Rosados made Navarra famous and are still 24% of the production. Winemakers use the sangrado method; direct pressing is not allowed. A typical Navarra rosado is from 100% garnacha, but today there are also blends with tempranillo, merlot or cabernet sauvignon; whites are not allowed.
Rioja offers a wide range of rosado and clarete styles, from pale, light and fruity, to intense coloured claretes and barrel aged rosados. Most rosados are blends of tempranillo and garnacha, but graciano, maturana tinta and mazuela are also allowed. They are made by skin contact and pressing, or by direct pressing. Claretes are from reds (>25%) and whites as e.g. viura; both combined and then pressed.
Some amazing rosados come from Ribera del Duero and some wineries here have rediscovered the clarete tradition. Other interesting rosados come from Priorat, Méntrida, Valencia, Bierzo (mencia) or Yecla (monastrell).