GRUPO VINICOLA MARQUES DE VARGAS
The Grupo Vinícola Marqués de Vargas makes high quality white and red wines in 3 prestigious wine regions in Spain:
All our wines are made exclusively from our own grapes, from low-yielding vines and in limited production. They are carefully selected from different plots with their unique terroir which fully express the qualities of its singular setting in the final product. The three wineries epitomize the spirit of a typical French “Chateau”, with the cellar in the heart of its surrounding vineyards.
Our pesticide-free managed vineyards are planted with different grape varieties indigenous to their specific region and cover a total area of 180 ha. Our red wines age in French, American & Russian oak barrels creating fine balanced wines with a great complexity, intense ripe red fruit aromas enveloped by fine tannins and promising candidates for extended cellaring.
We don’t filter nor clarify our wines with the aim of preserving its natural qualities. The highly-sought-after Albariño based white wines are made using the most technologically advanced vinification process which result in elegant, aromatic wines balanced with a crisp acidity that provides a great backbone.
The history of Marqués de Vargas wines can be traced back to 1840, when Felipe de la Mata, 8th Marqués de Vargas, planted the first vines at Hacienda Pradolager, near Logroño.
Hilario de la Mata, 10th Marqués de Vargas and father of the current Marqués, was a particularly significant figure in the project’s history. He was chairman of an important group of wine producers and co-owner of another company in the sector. Don Hilario was as passionate about wine as his predecessors and had always dreamed about having his own vineyard and producing wine that bore his family name. Unfortunately he died very young and did not live to see his dream come true.
In 1989, Pelayo de la Mata, 9th Marqués de Vargas, and his siblings, saw their father’s dream fulfilled when they built the current winery at Hacienda Pradolagar in Logroño, in the heart of La Rioja Alta.
This was how Marqués de Vargas Family Wines and Estates was created, in tribute to Don Hilario de la Mata, who always wanted to have his own winery and produce wine that bore his family name. Don Pelayo de la Mata explains, “I remember my father’s expression, that gleam in his eyes when he talked, radiating excitement, about having his own winery, something he had thought about for years. My siblings and I couldn’t disappoint him.”
A unique corner of La Rioja
The winery is found in the centre of the vineyard, in similar fashion to a château, in the Ebro valley, an area commonly known as Los Tres Marqueses because the vineyards of three important Riojan wineries founded by their respective marquises meet here.
It is a wonderful location for growing grapes thanks to its continental climate enhanced by Atlantic influences. Its gentle topography has a high clay and limestone content that helps to produce balanced, full-bodied wines with high levels of total acidity that are particularly suited to ageing in barrels.
The garden of Hacienda Pradolagar
The Marqués de Vargas vineyards cover 60 hectares and are divided into 16 plots for different wines, with red grape varieties typical to La Rioja such as Tempranillo, Garnacha, Mazuelo, Graciano and Maturana. High quality vines are grown without the use of herbicides and pesticides.
Throughout the year the vines are cared for as if they were in a garden; they are pruned and grapes are removed to increase the quality of the harvest. At harvest time, the grapes are collected by plot and the bunches arrive at the winery barely minutes after being picked by hand.
A yield of between 4,500 and 5,000 kilos is produced per hectare and we start to produce our wines at the very moment they are harvested by hand-picking the grapes from the vine. Our “Cuverie”, designed by Michel Rolland, means that we can separately vinify each of the 16 plots and then mature the wines in French and American oak barrels. We are also pioneers in using Seguin Moreau Russian oak barrels.
We successful produce wine for ageing, Reserve and Grand Reserve wines that are racked naturally, without filters, before ageing for several years in bottles before being released into the market.
Founded in the year 2000, Conde de San Cristóbal is owned by the Grupo Vinícola Marqués de Vargas and belongs to the Denominación de Origen Ribera del Duero. The vineyards and winery are located close to Peñafiel on the Pago de Valdestremero Estate, and have an extension of more than 80 hectares. A limited quantity of high quality red wine is produced with the name Conde de San Cristóbal, exclusively from our own vineyards.
Inaugurated in March of 2006 with the 2003 vintage being the first vintage released to the market, the modern winery is equipped with the most advanced technologies. The philosophy of the Group’s newest project is consistent with that of its Rioja and Rias Baixas wines - to produce the highest quality wine, made from grapes grown on
estate owned vineyards, in limited production. This new project gives the Grupo Vinícola Marqués de Vargas a strong presence in the three most prestigious wine growing regions in Spain.
On the 80 ha. Estate surrounded by long rows of vines of Tinto Fino, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, the viticulture methods are fundamental, since they lay the foundation of the wines, produced exclusively from the grapes grown on the Estate. The choice of these varietals is based on the analysis of the local soils and climate, and the perfect adaptation to both. Moreover, we considered these grapes to be ideal for the style of wine we were searching for. No herbicides or pesticides are used, only organic fertilizers. The first pruning is in the winter and the second is in the summer. The quality of the fruit is top priority. We limit the per-hectare production, which allows us to produce and age wines intense in color, strong and complex in structure, with a high fruit content, and great potential for development. The training system is a vertical trellis with a plantation density of 3,105 vines/hectare. The yield is between 1 and 1.4 kg/plant.
The winery Pazo de San Mauro, located in the DO Rias Baixas, was acquired by the GRUPO VINÍCOLA MARQUES DE VARGAS in 2003. Since then, the new owners have invested heavily in both the restoration of its magnificent buildings and the construction of a new wine cellar, with the most advanced technologies for the finest production of wine. In this winery two white wines from the albariño grape are produced and all grapes are grown on the estate owned vineyards.
The Pazo that overlooks the property that is located in the parish of San Pablo de Porto belongs to the town of Salvaterra do Miño. Built in 1591, the Pazo was the main dwelling of Pereira do Castro, descendent of Sancho I of Portugal. Vine cultivation has always been intimately linked to the history of the Pazo. Remains of an old winepress can be found in the building, proving that wine was already being made in the Pazo in the XVI century. The first modern Bodega was built in 1988, when the PAZO SAN MAURO winery was established.
The 30-hectare estate is situated in a privileged location for the cultivation of the Albarino grape attributable to optimal soil conditions, an exceptional microclimate, midday sunlight exposure and protection from northern winds. The Condado do Tea, where the winery is located, is the most southern and sunniest area. Because of this, a more complete and early maturity is achieved here, where harvesting can be carried out 15 to 20 days
earlier and the required degree of alcohol can be guaranteed. The vines are planted in descending terraces towards the Miño River, creating a natural amphitheatre facing south, bathed in extraordinary sunlight. The river stones on the hillsides and the alluvium soil on the riverbanks allow for the optimal cultivation of the different varieties of the vine. Although the majority of the vines are of the Albariño variety, there are plantations of other varieties, such as Loureiro, Treixadura and Torrontés. The grapes are grown on trellises in restricted production and are exposed to the optimal ventilation, resulting in the highest quality fruit. The average vine age is 30 years.
Paco & Lola - Rias Baixas
Paco & Lola comes from 500 sun-kissed acres of vineyards in Meano (Pontevedra) where the Rosalia de Castro Winery is situated in an area considered to be the cradle of Albarino wine. In the heartof the Salnes Valley, this special area of northwest Spain is making someof the country s most interesting white wines.
This valley, inhabited for thousands of years by the Celts, Phoenicians and Romans, naturally favors wine growing. The star variety of the valley is Albarino, which according to legend was introduced in the 12th century by Benedictine monks from central Europe. Today the Salnes Valley forms part of the famous Rias Baixas
Denomination of Origin.
The Salnes Valley has unique climatic characteristics that make this special place unlike any other part of the world and contribute to create a unique terroir. Good rainfall and small temperature variations are combined with sandy loam soils of granite origin that are lightly acidic. It is this secret formula that helps create the valley’s famous wines.
This coastal area has proven itself the perfect place to fully develop the potential of the Albarino variety s seductive aromas and flavors, thanks to fertile soils and a gentle climate where the vines grow fanned by cool Atlantic breezes.
Val do Salnés-Salnes Valley
- Granitic soils, sandy, rich in organic matter and slightly acidic, permeable and deep, except in the hills or hillsides.
- Altitudes rarely exceed 100 meters above sea level. Smallholding is the identity of the area itself.
Commitment to the Environment
- The work in our vineyards and the winery is based on searching the expression of terroir only through a careful and the latest winemaking techniques.
- Seeking the best expression of this unique terroir.
- Our integrated production process responds to this demand, utilizing agricultural production of plants that are between organic farming and conventional agriculture that leverage resources and natural production mechanisms.
- Sustainable farming. Integrated Production System minimizes the use of fertilizers and pesticides or fossil fuels.
Leaders in Sustainability
We participated in the LIFE + environmental project of Atlantic Vineyards in order to demonstrate the necessity and feasibility of the production of “sustainable” wine in the vineyards of the DO Rias Baixas.
Lines of work:
- Protection of biodiversity
- Sustainable Farming
- Reduction of carbon emissions.
- This project has received numerous awards.