Vineyards in Galicia

Me and the other half are currently planning a summer trip to Spain to visit our good friends there; we decided that rather than staying in Madrid, where they live –and where we’ve been many times- the four of us will head off to Galicia, and check out the local food and – naturally – wine.

I’ve never been to Galicia, but I love its wines! So if anyone’s got a particular recommendation for a vineyard to visit – that would be grand! It’s likely we’ll visit Martín Codáx, because it’s the biggest and sounds like it’s got a very good visitor/tasting centre; but smaller places are usually what I prefer, so your suggestions will be most welcome.

If you know of any interesting places to eat and drink as well – all the better.

Thanks in advance :+1: :grinning:

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Inbar, Galicia is a big and not-so-easy to get around part of Spain (but don’t let that put you off because it’s more than worth a visit) so much would depend on where you’re flying to and from.
If you’re visiting Martin Codax (whose wines I avoid in favour of the numerous and fantastic smaller producers in the region, many of which you can’t find in the UK) then I’ll assume you’re in the Pontevedra area.
There are wineries everywhere (almost literally) and far too many to remember the names of. But suffice to say that over 2 visits in 2 years (firstly to Baiona and Vigo and the following year on the Santiago de Compostela between O’porino and Santiago itself) we didn’t taste a single bad glass of wine. A first and surely unique experience…
I should say that our 1st bottle of albarino was so good that we pretty much stuck to that (the grape that is, not the producer) for the duration of both trips. Been trying to find the same quality in the UK with no success, or at least not in vfm terms.

The below winery does however supply TWS (as you’ll probably know) and is not far from MC. I have a bottle of its Albarino D Fefinanes '17 in my wine rack, just delivered so I’m allowing it to settle before opening but it sounds excellent and the winery sounds well worth a visit.
Bodegas del Palacio de Fefiñanes
Cambados, Pontevedra, Spain

You should definitely visit the places I mentioned above, all of which are well worth spending a few nights in and have good access to local wineries. Santiago is the highlight and possibly my favourite Spanish town - and I should say that I have no bias: I was not there as a pilgrim but as a lover of Spain, walking and wine…
This is already a long response and I haven’t even answered all your questions. I can certainly suggest good places to stay, eat and drink if you let me know your likely itinerary.
Cheers.

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I’m sort of banking on it! :grin:

Thanks for your really detailed reply, @johnny! :+1: The truth is that we are only just starting to plan the trip, so I’m not sure exactly where we’ll be/for how long. We only got a week in total, and at least two/three days we would like to visit Vigo and the surrounding coastline (Cíes islands, in particular). So I suspect we won’t manage more than 2 or 3 winery visits.

Interestingly, you mention Palacio de Fefiñanes! It’s definitely on my radar, because I love their Albariño (tasted it first in the Lewes Fine Wine Summer Walkaround -it’s a beauty!)- so I think it’s definitely a strong contender.

It’s likely that we will hire a car, so I think we’ll be fairly flexible - and I suspect we will be staying in Santiago de Compostela. From what I gather, there are a number of wineries not that far from the city, so hopefully we’ll be able to combine exploring the city with a few winery visits. From what you say sounds like there are plenty of options! :crossed_fingers:

If you can recommend a nice place to eat/drink in Santiago, that’ll be great, too! Thanks again! :pray:

You truly will be spoilt for choice. But depending on your prefs., fine/casual dining, you won’t go wrong with one of these options -
I created a shortlist of places on Google Maps.
https://goo.gl/maps/zfjCiK9wJ2D2

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Thanks, @johnny!! You’re a star :sparkles: :grinning:
Getting hungry just looking at the photos!..…. :star_struck:

I’m also going to be in Galicia this summer. We’ll be south of Vigo, very close to Portugal. Only consideration is keeping the children satisfied while getting to see as many of the wineries as possible!

Inbar. If you want to go to Cies islands I suggest you book in advance. We were in Galicia this summer and hoping to go there but unable to visit as they are capping the numbers able to visit the isalnds. You need to go on a website and get some kind of permit before you are able to get a ferry it seems (or so the lady in the toursit office in Vigo was saying). I’ll try and dig out the relevant website you need to register with. We did have some great oysters and seafood paella in the old town instead. We need to visit again to get to the Cies islands and enjoyed our holiday so much we may visit Galicia again next year. Lots of good advice on vineyards and places to eat in “The wines of northern spain” by Rosemary George which was published this year I think

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Thanks for the tip, @GannetKeith!

I shall look into the permit, then - as this is on our ‘to see’ list. I’m in the midst of organising the vineyard visits, and got confirmation from Palacio de Fefiñane, Martin Codax and Paco and Lola. Really wanted to visit Castro Martin, but they wrote back to say that they are such a small operation they are not really open to the public. They were really nice about it, and were happy that we were interested in the winery.

Having had to cut the stay in Galicia short by 2 days - as will be staying in Madrid two extra days now (long story), I don’t want to bore my other half to death with doing lots of wineries. But I suspect there will be lots of really good wine bars, and places to just chill out with some Albariño or Godello (or both!) and Pulpo a la Gallego. Now just counting the days until Thursday…

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Do let me know how you get on with this as I’d love to try and visit another time!

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Will do! :+1:

Spanish Wine Lover website has lots of good info

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Really wouldn’t waste a visit on Codax. Big producer, boring wines! Paco & Lola also very commercial wines. These two don’t really show the best Galicia has to offer.

Ribeira Sacra - Algueira, Fedellos de Couto, Finca Millara… Some of the most spectacular vineyards in the world, and great cool climate Mencia.

Ribeiro - Carlos Estevez, Sameiras…

Rias Baixas - Forjas de Salnes, Zarate, Terras Gauda…

For me Galícia is, with Sicily, the most interesting source of wine these days. Suffice to say I hardly even miss French wine I can longer afford :slight_smile:

Never made it to the Cies but would love to. Advance booking essential in August, maybe not even possible?

Great seafood is everywhere, best in the world no question!

I disagree on Codax: I’ve enjoyed their Albarinos (less enthusiastic about the godello). (Apologies for not taking the trouble to find the tilde.)

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So have I! Especially Burgans:

https://www.martincodax.com/en/wines/10-6-bottle-box-burgans.html

Thanks for recommendation, @suiko! I appreciate MC and Paco & Lola are fairly big producers, but I like their wines, and that’s one consideration. The other is limitation of time and transport due to last minute changes to original plans, but I’m sure this will not be our only visit to Galicia, so smaller producers will feature in the future, no doubt! :+1:

Fair enough. I’m not saying Codax are rubbish, just that they are far from the best. When I go to a wine region I try to choose carefully, as it’s usually one or at most two visits, and also I prefer the experience of visiting small family setups. But I appreciate you’re going back :slight_smile:

Kinda surprised no one else has mentioned the reds or Ribeira Sacra, though. This is probably the most interesting area of Galicia for me.

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I totally agree! Mencia is one of my favourite reds. We’re not going to be in the Ribeira Sacra area this time round - concentrating mainly on Pontevedra/Cambados, as had to cut the trip short by 2 days, but it’s definitely one for next time!

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The vineyards are truly stunning. Beautiful walking too… Ancient lichen covered Celtic woods, more like Ireland than what people normally think of Spain!

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Yes, we’re just a bit too far away to be making that journey.

We’ve placed a Vinissimus order with a nice selection of Galician wines from outside Rías Baixas or otherwise I suspect it would be a sea of Albarino. I’ve also heard there’s a nice wine shop in A Guarda, which is fairly close to our house.