Feb 05 2024

European Commission Approves “Fortified Wine” Label for Rueda DO Wines

Rueda’s DO “dorado” and “pálido” wines are now considered to be “fortified wines,” along with five DOs in Andalusia

The European Commission has decided to allow Rueda DO to use the term “fortified wine” to refer to its “dorado” and “pálido” wines, starting in February.

The initial request came from the Spanish government, as “fortified wines” was a label that was previously reserved for Andalusian wines only. Together with DO Rueda, there are now five DOs and quality labels that are allowed to label their wines as “fortified:” Jerez-Xérès-Sherry and Manzanilla-Sanlúcar de Barrameda DO, Montilla-Moriles DO, Lebrija VC, Condado de Huelva DO and Málaga-Sierras de Málaga DO.

Vino “dorado” from Rueda is made from Palomino Fino and/or Verdejo grapes, and it’s a traditional wine made from the region, through oxidative aging. It remains in oak barrels for at least the last two years before it’s bottled. These wines have a golden color, hence the name, with slightly toasted aromas and flavors.

Vino “pálido” is made from the same grape varieties via biological aging and is aged in oak barrels for at least three years before bottling. These wines have flavors of marzipan and yeast and nut and baked apple flavors and aromas.

This is major news for Rueda DO, as it officially recognizes the origin of wines from the area, which have been produced there since the reign of the Catholic Monarchs. These wines are known as “Vinos de licor” and they include the DO’s “dorado” and “pálida” wines.