Winner Details

North (including Navarra & Txakoli)

With the possible exception of Priorat, these northern and north-eastern regions of Spain are not that well known by most restaurant customers, so you’re firmly in hand-sell territory here – particularly for styles like Txakoli, which are as challenging to drink as they are to pronounce.

So right from the start there were caveats from our tasters here regarding ease of sale and (particularly for Catalonia) pricing. 

On the plus side, what we didn’t have, for the most part, were questions over the quality – particularly when it came to the reds. In the early stages there were some wines where ambition didn’t match delivery, but once these had been removed, there were some very good wines here that could fit everywhere from Spanish fine dining to gastropubs – and that went for both reds and whites.

From The Tasting Teams

‘There were some really good northern Spanish reds, with some really good value around the mid-range of about £8 to £11: nice, well-structured wines, with juicy fruit. They really delivered on all fronts in terms of balance, and for the prices they were asking.’ Sam Weatherill, Etch. by Steven Edwards

‘Of all the wines we tasted today I actually think the northern Spanish whites would be the easiest to sell. They’re easy to drink, but at the same time they’re complex and food friendly.’ Luma Monteiro, Wineria

‘Some of the lower-end northern reds really showed well. A pub could make a lot of money selling the cheaper ones by the glass.’ Tim Smith, Winesurfer Consulting

Award winners

Found 19 wines

Spain: North, including Navarra

Ochoa, La Foto de 1938, Crianza 2015, Navarra, Spain

Gold medal winner

'A classic style from this part of Spain, with hints of red and black cherries, and sour cherries too, with vanilla, cedar and turned earth. Great complexity, and a lovely wine to match with meaty courses, especially game, with root vegetables.' Laurent Richet MS, team leader. 'Really fresh, with a great mix of savoury cedar spice and bramble fruit. A well-made wine for the money.' Sam Weatherill, Etch. by Steven Edwards.

£9.42 Davy's Wine Merchants

Guelbenzu, Evo 2013, Ribera del Queiles, Spain

Gold medal winner

'A great wine for the price, with a hint of chocolate and coffee against the fruit and alcohol. A full-bodied wine that needs roe deer with chocolate sauce and roasted root vegetables.' Laurent Richet MS, team leader. 'A lovely, lively nose of stewed plums and Christmas spice aromas, and good balance on the palate, with a rich mouthfeel and structure.' Sam Weatherill, Etch. by Steven Edwards.

£13.00 Boutinot

Boutinot , Brisa de Verano, Garnacha Tinta 2018, Aragon, Spain

Gold medal winner

'A full-bodied wine with intense black fruit concentration and herbal hints, with just the right amount of bitterness and tannin structure to balance the fruit and acidity.' Laurent Richet MS, team leader. 'Juicy warmed red berries and currants, with some floral, violet notes too.' Tom Forrest, team leader. 'With intense aromas of cherries and blueberries, and good balance, this would be great by glass.' Elena Serban, Heritage Restaurant.

£6.55 Boutinot

Bodegas San Alejandro, Vinas de Miedes, Garnacha, Calatayud 2018, Aragon, Spain

Silver medal winner

'A charming nose of dark cherries, plums and blueberries with a little bit of pepper spice and some floral notes. The balance is spot-on, making this very quaffable, with good harmony between juiciness and structure.' Sam Weatherill, Etch. by Steven Edwards. 'Fresh raspberries and strawberries, red and black cherry, some oak and spice, with good freshness and tannins.' Romain de Courcy, The Ritz Paris.

£8.00 Hallgarten & Novum Wines

Gorka Izagirre, Txakolí G22 2017, Bizkaiko Txakolina, Spain

Silver medal winner

'Highly refreshing acidity and subtle underripe stone fruits and Granny Smith apples - a light white wine to be served as an aperitif or with soft cheeses.' Jurijs Nemkovs, StreetXO. 'Notes of candied apple, lemons, mango and pineapple, as well as some rose blossom.' Sam Winterbottom, The Albert Square Chop House.

£13.25 Boutinot

Borsao, Cabriola by Borsao 2016, Campo de Borja, Spain

Silver medal winner

'Big and bold, with lots of dark berries mixed with red cherries, and with some nice acidity to help carry the wine.' Giancarlo Cuccuru, The Ned. 'Jammy fruit and a dollop of vanilla cream leads to a well-made palate with pleasant fruit characteristics and a fine finish.' Michael Fiducia, Royal Automobile Club.

£12.00 Boutinot

Chivite Family Estates, Las Fincas Blanco, 2 Garnachas 2018, Navarra, Spain

Silver medal winner

'A great example of a Spanish white wine, showing great balance between acidity and fruit extraction from ripe and juicy grapes.' Jurijs Nemkovs, StreetXO. 'A subtle kerosene note, with an abundance of citrus and salinity, as well as high acidity, make this very gastronomic. Either a dainty lemon sole or meaty monkfish would both work well as pairings here.' Harry Ballmann, Folie.

£12.36 Enotria&Coe

Tandem, Ars Nova, Tempranillo/Cabernet/Merlot 2014, Navarra, Spain

Bronze medal winner

'Opening with dry, ripe black fruits like cherries and blackberries, these are joined by tertiary aromas of evolution such as sweet vanilla spice, leather and delicate black chocolate, with a good black fruit and spice finish, and some well-integrated alcohol.' Marco Marcuzzo, Zuma Rome.

£10.97 Hallgarten & Novum Wines

Pardevalles, Albarín 2019, Castilla y León, Spain

Bronze medal winner

'This is super-aromatic, with fruit pastille and green herb notes, and some vivid lime acidity. A vibrant wine with a fine mineral sign-off.' Sarah Jane Evans MW, team leader. 'A highly floral and intense nose, with tropical pineapple fruit notes joined by candied orange and bright citrus, complemented by well-integrated acidity.' Harry Ballmann, Folie.

£20.00 Pardevalles

Señorio de Valdesneros, Roble 2017, Arlanza, Spain

Bronze medal winner

'A big and bold wine, with heavy, dark fruits and a lot of spice.' Giancarlo Cuccuru, The Ned. 'This is showing some dark plum and herbal notes, with a lightly structured palate.' Michael Fiducia, Royal Automobile Club. 'Fruit-driven and a bit spiced, with firm tannins.' Nuno Pereira, Theo Randall at the InterContinental Hotel.

£3.50 Señorio de Valdesneros

Guelbenzu, Azul 2016, Ribera del Queiles, Spain

Bronze medal winner

'An opulent and savoury wine, with dark fruit characters leading to a nicely approachable and balanced palate of freshness, fruit and structure.' Michael Fiducia, Royal Automobile Club. 'With notes of juicy tomatoes, and berry jam, this has good structure, with balanced acidity and a pleasant finish.' Lionel Periner, team leader.

£8.40 Boutinot

Chivite Family Estates, Finca Legardeta, Seleccion Especial 2015, Navarra, Spain

Bronze medal winner

'Dark cherry meets some chocolate, clove and juniper notes - this is soft, but has power, with a touch of elegance too.' Giancarlo Cuccuru, The Ned. 'The aroma is open, with some red fruit notes leading to a palate with some floral and fresh berry notes, and a pleasant finish with elegant oak ageing.' Lionel Periner, team leader.

£12.56 Enotria&Coe

Ochoa, Uvadouble 2017, Navarra, Spain

Commended medal winner

Guelbenzu, Vierlas 2017, Ribera del Queiles, Spain

Commended medal winner

£7.10 Boutinot

Borsao, Selección, Tinto 2019, Campo de Borja, Spain

Commended medal winner

£6.05 Boutinot

Borsao, Zarihs, Old Vine Shiraz 2016, Campo de Borja, Spain

Commended medal winner

£12.40 Boutinot

Borsao, Tres Picos, Garnacha 2018, Campo de Borja, Spain

Commended medal winner

£11.55 Boutinot

Chivite Family Estates, Finca Legardeta, Chardonnay 2018, Navarra, Spain

Commended medal winner

£12.45 Enotria&Coe

Bodegas Frontonio, Cuevas de Arom, As Ladieras, Garnacha 2015, Campo de Borja, Spain

Commended medal winner

£16.20 Bibendum

 

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