D.O. Manchuela

Over the past few years, the DO Manchuela has worked extensively on improving the quality of its wines, and it’s clear that its efforts have paid off. Improved technological advances and greater knowledge in the cultivation of their vineyards have launched the region into a new era. The wines produced here are enjoyed both in the domestic and the international market, which 80% of production sold internationally. Harvests are now carried out slightly sooner to produce slightly subtler wines, with the skins being separated from the must to get more subdued colours, while the wines are cold stabilized and undergo fermentation in controlled temperatures, in search for fruity aromas.

The Jucar Valley is an excellent communication route between Levantine lands and those of the Mesteta (Plateau). This geographical permeability has been the source of continuous crossover of mutual cultural, political and economic influences. This ancient region has several roots and has been home to different peoples throughout the centuries, as well as a privileged witness to battles, conquests and reconquests. All these happenings and experiences have forged a distinguishing character and culture, where wine has often played a large part in the heritage of this region.


The history in Manchuela coincides more or less with the viticultural history of La Mancha, since until 2000 the majority of the DO Manchuela came under the umbrella of the DO La Mancha. The region is now the seventh Manchego DO. In the early official division of wine DOs in Spain, in 1966, the area had already been differentiated from its neighbouring areas, but it has taken almost forty years to go from the drawing-up stage to the current reality.The DO Manchuela was actually originally part of a bigger DO, with included the DO’s La Mancha, Almansa, Méntrida.


It was in 1982 when these regions decided to establish their own regulatory councils in order to defend their own interests. Then, in 1997, a group of winegrowing entrepreneurs and wine merchants from the region, whose wines came under the geographic appellation as Vinos de la Tierra, made important investments in technology and winemaking improvements. Together with support from the Manchuela Rural Development Board, they set out to create the Association for promoting DO Manchuela wines, aware that their wines deserved to be properly represented in the competitive market of quality wines.


The DO Manchuela is situated in the central eastern quadrant of Spain, between Madrid and Valencia, and covers a large area of 44 municipalities in the southeast of the Cuenca provice and 26 in the province of Albacete, with its vineyards located between the valleys of the rivers Jucar and Cabriel. The DO Manchuela borders with the DO La Mancha in the west, the DO Utiel-Requena in the east, and the DO Jumilla in the south. The DO Manchuela is currently home to over 5,500 hectares of registered vineyards, of which 3,340 hectares are situated in Albacete, while the other 2,200 are situated in the Cuenca. The DO also accounts for 800 winemakers and 33 wineries, of which over half are cooperatives.  


Climate, Soils and Varieties.


The DO Manchuela enjoys a a continental climate, that is dry, experiences strong contrasts in Temperature throughout the year, and is influenced by the moist Levant winds.  During the maturation periods of the grapes, the high temperatures during the day from the Poniente wind and the coolness and humidity of the Mediterranean breeze favour slow ripening and perfect formation of the polyphenols in the grapes, making this an ideal region for growing and cultivating red grape varieties. Also, the almost complete lack of rainfall between the months of May and September, as well as the enormous amount of sunshine received during the ripening process, make the risk of disease negligible and quality is, therefore, not affected by plant protection treatments.


The vineyards in the region are home limestone-based clay soils, and are situated at altitudes between 600 and 900 metres. Two large marshes north of the vineyards, the Alarcon and Contreras Reservoirs, allow abundant irrigation in the area.


The DO Manchuela is home to a wide range of grape varieties. Concerning white varieties, vineyards in the region are home to Albillo, Chardonnay, Macabeo, Moscatel Grano Menudo, Pardillo, Sauvignon Blanc, Verdejo and Viognier; while the red varieties grown in the region include Bobal, Cencibel (Tempranillo), Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Frasco (Tinto Velasco), Garnacha, Garnacha Tintorerea, Graciano, Malbec, Mazuelo, Merlot, Monastrell, Moravia Dulce, Moravia Agria, Petit Verdot, Pinot Noir, Rojal and Syrah.


However, of all the varieties, the Bobal (locally known as Provechón), is the most widely cultivated and often associated with the region. In regards to white wines ,the Albillo and Macabeo varieties tend to dominate.


Wines and wineries in the DO Manchuela

The DO. Manchuela is home to a wide range of cooperatives, but also a number of small and medium sized wineries that are also producing high quality wines which are giving a new sense of life to Manchuela wines. 

A good example is Finca Sandoval, situated in Ledaña (Cuenca). The winery was founded in 2000 by Victor de la Serna, a respected journalist who for years had written about the world of wine and viticultural issues. At the end of the nineties, he decided to implement the knowledge he had learned over the years, and began to develop a personal project with 10 hectares of vineyards at his disposal. The vines were strains from a clonal selection of Syrah from a nursery associated with the prestigious Château de Beaucastel Chateaneuf-du-Pape (France). The estate is also home to other grape varieties, such as Bobal (on vines over 70 years old), and Touriga Nacional, a noble variety from Portugal, which is used to make FInca Sandoval Cuvée TNS, the first Spanish red to be predominantly made with the Touriga variety, of which only 300 magnums are produced. Then there is Fina Sandoval, a blend of Syrah (91%) and Monastrell (9%), and is perhaps one of the wineries biggest hits. The wine undergoes fermentation in small, open tanks, with frequent manual pump overs carried out, and is aged for 11 months in new French oak barrels. The wine is all in all made following many of the guidelines followed in French Rhône.  Another wine by the winery is Salia, an interesting blend of Syrah (60%) and Grenache (40%), and is aged for 11 months in French oak barrels. The winery also produces two single variety wines under the Signo collection, with a Bobal (from vines from 1939), and a Garnacha (from vines over 40 years old). Finally there is La Rosa, a cuvee produced during only extraordinary vintages, and Cecilia Cuvée, a naturally sweet wine made from Syrah and a touch of Moscatel de Alejandría.  

Then there is Bodegas Iniesta, a true reflection of a family effort to carry out a project that holds the importance of the land, tradition, dedication and purity.  Now the name, Iniesta, has become famous worldwide due to FC Barcelona player Andres Iniesta, and in fact this winery is owned and led by his family. The winery is currently home to 120 hectares, where they cultivate a range of grape varieties that produce their range of over half a dozen wines. Their most popular label is Corazón Loco, under which they produce a young white, rosé, red, naturally sweet wine and a rosé de aguja. Then there is the crianza with Corazón Loco Selección, a red wine made from a blend of Syrah, Petit Verdot, Tempranillo and Cabernet Sauvignon, aged for 12 months in French oak barrels. Then there is Corazón Loco Premium, the first reserva produced by the family,and the Finca el Carril Hechicero, with Tempranillo, Petit Verdot, Syrah and Cabernet Sauvignon, and 12 months in oak barrels (80% French, 20% American); in addition to his Finca El Carril Paolo Andrea, made with the Bobal variety, and aged in French oak barrels for 12 months. As a latest development is the Minuto 116 Blanco collection, a white Macabeo from the Finca el Carril, and Minute 116 Tinto, made with Tempranillo and Petit Verdot from the FInca Los Mocoticos, aged briefly in French and American oak barrels.


Bodegas Ponce. This is a family winery that is home to 22 hectares of vineyards, and bases the pillars of its work in the native Bobal grape variety, using it to produce different wines, all vinified differently depending on the terroir from which they come. Recently, the winery increased its production with a vineyard of Bobal (with vines over 60 years old), to improve the quality of their wines and prevent the disappearance of these old vineyards. All of vines are cultivated the traditional way (on low bush vines), following the principles of organic agriculture, avoiding the use of any chemical products. Their most spectacular wine is perhaps PF (Pie Franco), a single variety Bobal wine from a 0.5 hectare plot home to 60 year old wines, without rootstocks, hence the name of the wine. The vigor of its strains and soil texture, highlights the amazing potential of this vineyard. The ripening of the grapes occurs at a slower rate than in the rest of the plots of Bodegas Ponce, the same happens with the alcoholic fermentation, which can be extended for one month until the indigenous yeasts are able to metabolize the sugars completely. Malolactic fermentation takes on its lees in French oak barrels of different capacities, and aged for 10 months. The winery also produces Reto, white wine made with the native Albillo; Clos Lojén, made with Bobal from vines between 30 and 50 years old; Buena Pinta, made with the recovered Moravia Agria variety native to the region; La Casilla, made with the Bobal variety from vines between 35 and 70 years old, grown on chalky soils; and Pino, another Bobal varietal from a single 1 hectare plot of 35 years, with only 1,800 bottles produced.


 


 

Wineries belonging to the D.O Manchuela:

Outstanding wines from the D.O. Manchuela:

  • PF Ponce Pie Franco 2015

    Red wine Barrel. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Ponce. Grapes used in this wine: Bobal.

    14,75 VAT incl.
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    PF Ponce Pie Franco 2015

    Red wine Barrel. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Ponce. Grapes used in this wine: Bobal.

    14,75 VAT incl.
    Online only
  • Finca Sandoval Signo 2011

    Red wine Crianza. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Finca Sandoval. Production area: Manchuela. Grapes used in this wine: Syrah and Bobal.

    • Parker 90
    18,30 VAT incl.
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    Finca Sandoval Signo 2011

    Red wine Crianza. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Finca Sandoval. Production area: Manchuela. Grapes used in this wine: Syrah and Bobal.

    • Parker: 90
    18,30 VAT incl.
    Online only
  • Salia de Finca Sandoval 2011

    Red wine Crianza. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Finca Sandoval. Production area: Manchuela. Grapes used in this wine: Garnacha Tintorera and Garnacha Tinta and Syrah.

    • Parker 90
    13,50 VAT incl.
    6x
    12,80 €/u
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    Salia de Finca Sandoval 2011

    Red wine Crianza. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Finca Sandoval. Production area: Manchuela. Grapes used in this wine: Garnacha Tintorera and Garnacha Tinta and Syrah.

    • Parker: 90
    13,50 VAT incl.
    6x
    12,80 €/u
    Online only
  • La Casilla Estrecha 2015

    Red wine Barrel. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Ponce. Production area: Manchuela. Grapes used in this wine: Bobal.

    • Parker 94
    22,60 VAT incl.
    6x
    21,50 €/u
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    La Casilla Estrecha 2015

    Red wine Barrel. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Ponce. Production area: Manchuela. Grapes used in this wine: Bobal.

    • Parker: 94
    22,60 VAT incl.
    6x
    21,50 €/u
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  • Ponce Pino 2015

    Red wine Barrel. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Ponce. Production area: Manchuela. Grapes used in this wine: Bobal.

    23,95 VAT incl.
    6x
    22,75 €/u
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    Ponce Pino 2015

    Red wine Barrel. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Ponce. Production area: Manchuela. Grapes used in this wine: Bobal.

    23,95 VAT incl.
    6x
    22,75 €/u
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  • Reto 2015

    White wine Barrel. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Ponce. Production area: Manchuela. Grapes used in this wine: Albillo.

    • Parker 93
    • Peñin 93
    13,25 VAT incl.
    Out of stock!
    Sold out
    Reto 2015

    White wine Barrel. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Ponce. Production area: Manchuela. Grapes used in this wine: Albillo.

    • Parker: 93
    • Peñin: 93
    13,25 VAT incl.
    Out of stock!
    Sold out
  • Corazón Loco Tinto 2015

    Red wine Young. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Iniesta. Production area: Manchuela. Grapes used in this wine: Syrah and Tempranillo.

    5,85 VAT incl.
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    Corazón Loco Tinto 2015

    Red wine Young. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Iniesta. Production area: Manchuela. Grapes used in this wine: Syrah and Tempranillo.

    5,85 VAT incl.
    Online only
  • Buena Pinta 2015

    Red wine Barrel. 7 months in French oak barrels. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Ponce. Production area: Manchuela. Grapes used in this wine: Garnacha Tinta and Moravia Agria.

    • Parker 92
    • Peñin 92
    12,60 VAT incl.
    6x
    12,00 €/u
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    Buena Pinta 2015

    Red wine Barrel. 7 months in French oak barrels. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Ponce. Production area: Manchuela. Grapes used in this wine: Garnacha Tinta and Moravia Agria.

    • Parker: 92
    • Peñin: 92
    12,60 VAT incl.
    6x
    12,00 €/u
    Online only
  • Clos Lojen 2015

    Red wine Barrel. 7 months in French oak barrels. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Ponce. Production area: Manchuela. Grapes used in this wine: Bobal.

    • Parker 90
    • Peñin 92
    6,75 VAT incl.
    6x
    6,40 €/u
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    Clos Lojen 2015

    Red wine Barrel. 7 months in French oak barrels. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Ponce. Production area: Manchuela. Grapes used in this wine: Bobal.

    • Parker: 90
    • Peñin: 92
    6,75 VAT incl.
    6x
    6,40 €/u
    Online only
  • Finca Sandoval 2010

    Red wine Crianza. 11 months in French and American oak barrels. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Finca Sandoval. Production area: Manchuela. Grapes used in this wine: Monastrell and Bobal and Syrah.

    22,95 VAT incl.
    6x
    21,80 €/u
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    Finca Sandoval 2010

    Red wine Crianza. 11 months in French and American oak barrels. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Finca Sandoval. Production area: Manchuela. Grapes used in this wine: Monastrell and Bobal and Syrah.

    22,95 VAT incl.
    6x
    21,80 €/u
    Online only
  • PF Ponce Pie Franco 2014

    Red wine Barrel. 10 months in French oak barrels. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Ponce. Production area: Manchuela. Grapes used in this wine: Bobal.

    • Parker 91
    • Peñin 93
    14,75 VAT incl.
    Last 15 available!
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    PF Ponce Pie Franco 2014

    Red wine Barrel. 10 months in French oak barrels. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Ponce. Production area: Manchuela. Grapes used in this wine: Bobal.

    • Parker: 91
    • Peñin: 93
    14,75 VAT incl.
    Last 15 available!
  • La Casilla 2014

    Red wine Barrel. 10 months in French oak barrels. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Ponce. Production area: Manchuela. Grapes used in this wine: Bobal.

    • Parker 90
    12,60 VAT incl.
    6x
    12,00 €/u
    Units
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    La Casilla 2014

    Red wine Barrel. 10 months in French oak barrels. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Ponce. Production area: Manchuela. Grapes used in this wine: Bobal.

    • Parker: 90
    12,60 VAT incl.
    6x
    12,00 €/u
  • La Rosa de Finca Sandoval 2007

    Red wine Reserva. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Finca Sandoval. Production area: Manchuela. Grapes used in this wine: Garnacha Tintorera and Syrah.

    • Parker 93
    28,85 VAT incl.
    6x
    27,35 €/u
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    La Rosa de Finca Sandoval 2007

    Red wine Reserva. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Finca Sandoval. Production area: Manchuela. Grapes used in this wine: Garnacha Tintorera and Syrah.

    • Parker: 93
    28,85 VAT incl.
    6x
    27,35 €/u
  • PF Ponce Pie Franco 2013

    Red wine Barrel. 10 months in French oak barrels. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Ponce. Production area: Manchuela. Grapes used in this wine: Bobal.

    • Parker 92
    14,75 VAT incl.
    Last 21 available!
    Units
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    PF Ponce Pie Franco 2013

    Red wine Barrel. 10 months in French oak barrels. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Ponce. Production area: Manchuela. Grapes used in this wine: Bobal.

    • Parker: 92
    14,75 VAT incl.
    Last 21 available!
  • Finca Sandoval Signo 2010

    Red wine Crianza. 11 months in French oak barrels. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Finca Sandoval. Production area: Manchuela. Grapes used in this wine: Syrah and Bobal.

    • Parker 90
    18,30 VAT incl.
    Last 2 available!
    Units
    Buy
    Finca Sandoval Signo 2010

    Red wine Crianza. 11 months in French oak barrels. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Finca Sandoval. Production area: Manchuela. Grapes used in this wine: Syrah and Bobal.

    • Parker: 90
    18,30 VAT incl.
    Last 2 available!
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