The Rueda Verdejo. I’ll have a Rueda wine, please!
Many of you ask us on your visits to wineries and social networks about the qualities of the Rueda Verdejo grape. It is true that, based on the market success of our Designation of Origin, our offer has grown year after year, but there is only one Rueda Verdejo grape. What is it that makes our grapes so recognisable and different? To put it simply and avoid technicalities, we have summarised it in four key points:
First of all, the altitude of the vineyards, which are located between 700 and 800 metres above sea level, on flat lands that are high up, withstanding cold and very long winters.
Secondly, latitude. The Rueda region is located in the Mediterranean.
Naturally and very distinctly, the weather: short springs with late frosts and hot, dry summers. The scarcity of rain, which forces the vines to seek moisture in the deepest subsoil.
In addition, the difference in temperature between day and night provides a balance between the sugar the grape gains from the sun and the acidity it maintains during the cool nights. Sunshine hours reach 2,600 per year, which would be too much if it were not for the late ripening of the grape. The names of the grapes, in certain cases, have a clear meaning. In the same way that the ‘Tempranillo’ red grape refers to an early ripening, the ‘Verdejo’ white variety refers to its green status most of the time, which indicates a late ripening.
Finally, soil composition. The ground is a surface of stoned pebbles with good aeration and drainage. The mineral composition is rich in calcium and magnesium. The stones have considerable thermal inertia, they retain the heat during the day and gradually release it at night.
All this confers a highly characteristic aroma of lowland grasses, with fruity notes and excellent acidity. The extract, a characteristic feature of excellent white wines, is noticeable for its volume, a slightly bitter note and a great expression of fruit.
As you can see, there are many and varied factors that influence the end result of the wine; all this is summarised in the concept that the French call “TERROIR” (“TERRUÑO” in Spanish), which is ultimately what provides the unique and differentiated personality to each wine.