Ribeira Sacra and Ribeiro
Ribeira Sacra and Ribeiro are Spanish Denominations of Origin (DO) for wines located in the north and northwest of the province of Ourense, in Galicia, Spain.
Winemaking in this area dates back to Roman times, and was continued by monks during the Middle Ages. The landscape of the region is spectacular, covered in beautiful terraced vineyards, however with inclines of 45-60 degrees (and reaching up to 85 degrees), it is not possible to mechanise the vineyard activities, such as pruning and harvesting. While these gradients therefore make for very hard work, they are also important for protecting the vines against frost bite, which a number of non-terraced vineyards in the area have been affected by this year.
Ribeira Sacra specializes in the production of dry red wines from the Mencia grape, with other preferred red varieties being Brancellao and Merenzao. There are also a range of white wines produced, with the most important white-wine varieties being Godello (Verdelho), Treixadura and Albarino.
Ribeiro, on the other hand, is mostly known for its white wines. The principal grape varieties are Treixadura, Torrontes, Godello, Loureiro and Albarino, with white wines accounting for around 85 percent of all wines produced in the DO, perfect for pairing with the amazing seafood from the Galician region!
There are a number of fantastic wineries in these regions, a number with restaurants and many have views that you have to see to believe. We had a lovely lunch at Bodega Algueira, which is also just a short drive from an amazing lookout, “Mirador Peno Do Castello”, where there is a pretty little chapel from where you can get a spectacular 360 degree view of the amazing terraced vineyards and beautiful surrounding rivers.
We based ourselves in Ourense, which is quite a pretty and lively city, and there is a great scenic drive (click here for Google Map link) from here to Ribeira Sacra that takes in a couple of beautiful Monasteries and passes through some very pretty villages and vistas.
An amazingly beautiful region that is definitely worth adding to your bucket list!