A guide to the 2016 harvest: Spain

Spainish harvest 2016 scenesThe 2016 harvest in Spain promises good quality with volumes slightly down in some areas, making it the third biggest producer this year – after Italy and France. The hot and dry conditions meant no disease or fungus pressure, with good quality expected especially for red wines and rosé.


Here is a round-up of the harvest from two key regions:



The 2016 harvest in Rioja is said to be “exceptional in both quantity and quality”, according to the Rioja DOCa report. The harvest took place over two months, due to very slow development during the first four weeks, with its peak around the second week of October.

The dry and sunny weather that dominated until the end of October, as well as moderate rainfall during the third week of September and early October, helped complete grape ripening. Surprisingly, production in the cooler areas of Rioja has been much higher than expected, due to the effect produced by these unseasonal rains.


Rias Baixas

It was a very good quality vintage in Rias Baixas. Andrew McCarthy of Bodegas Castro Martin explains, “The 2016 harvest was in many ways really quite uneventful. The picking itself was super quick (and easy owing to the very healthy fruit) and the only event of any significance was a short burst of rain that arrived just as we started to pick. After three months of virtual drought, the arrival of this rain was quite ironic.

“Despite picking slightly fewer kilos than planned, the quality of the 2016 wines could be outstanding – but only time will tell. The Albarino grapes were healthy, while analysis reveal an almost perfect balance in terms of sugar, pH and acidity. The developing Albarino wines are ripe, concentrated, packed with fruit and will be very aromatic. Because we managed to retain the right acidity, it should also be well-balanced.”


Find out more about the 2016 harvest across the rest of the Northern Hemisphere here.

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12th December 2016

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