Spanish wine always tastes better in its home country – maybe it’s the sunny weather, maybe it’s the laid back atmosphere, or maybe it’s just the extraordinary selection of wines in even the smallest tavern, which caters to even the most discerning palate.
Whether you a fan of a spicy Rioja, a thick Tempranillo, a fruity Cava or a cheeky Sangria, you are covered with a wine-tasting tour from Insider’s Madrid. In the meantime, follow our advice to make sure you get the most out of your wine-tasting experience.
1. Keep it local
There is no point going to Madrid and drinking French wine. Likewise, you are missing the point if you order your wine with a side of crisps or curry.
When in Madrid, do as the Madrileños and enjoy a local wine with some locally-sourced tapas. Try a charcuterie plate with a full-bodied red, or a plate of spicy gambas (prawns) with a light white.
You can’t go far wrong with some local cheese and olives, and for those with a sweet tooth, a fresh custard tart will cut through the acidity of your wine just beautifully.
2. Visit a vineyard
Madrid is centrally located in the middle of Spain, and it is surrounded by wine-growing areas. Take a day trip to the Vegas, Guadarrama and Solero regions to visit some of the busiest and most popular vineyards in Spain. These areas have been producing wine for more than 900 years, and many of the processes remain unchanged. Take a step into history and grab a glass for the true Spanish experience.
3. Find an authentic wine bar
Like many capital cities, Madrid caters for tourists and features a plethora of ‘Irish’ bars, ‘pubs’ and generic ‘tavernas’. Seek out a traditional Spanish wine bar (or ‘vinoteca’) for a real taste of Spanish wine culture.
Some of our favourite include the esteemed Taberna Tempranillo, and the sherry-specialising La Vanencia in the city centre.
4. Keep an open mind
Some wine snobs dismiss Sangria as a cheap wine cocktail, but when done properly, a glass of Sangria represents everything that is sunny and wonderful about Spain: the defiant chill in the Madrid sunshine; the fruity punch; the sheer drinkability of the cocktail.
For the best Sangria in the city, try Las Cuevas del Sesamo (near Puerto del Sol) or the Taberna Txakolina (on Calle Cava Baja).
5. Pace yourself
If you are more of a pleasure drinker than a wine taster, take our advice – pace yourself. Wine is very much a part of Spanish culture, but always in moderation. Take your lead from the locals – enjoy a small glass of wine with your lunch, tapas and dinner, but don’t overdo it. Take a nap in the middle of the day if you need to sleep off your buzz, and head out again at 9pm to see Spanish nightlife in action.Share this post...
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