The Utiel-Requena PDO produces mainly red wines, with the Bobal variety being the most widespread, accounting for 65% of the protected production. In 2022, the Utiel-Requena PDO had 32,939 registered hectares, 110 wineries (57 of which bottled) and 4,542 winegrowers. At the end of the 2021-2022 campaign, 427,269 hectolitres of wine with PDO Utiel-Requena were qualified and 1,028,618 hectolitres were pending qualification. In terms of exports, the Utiel-Requena PDO exports 143,065 hectolitres per year, with the main destination markets being the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, Russia and China.
The wine-making tradition of Utiel-Requena dates back 2,700 years, backed up by archaeological sites that confirm the uninterrupted production and marketing of wine from Iberian times to the present day. Dozens of wine presses carved in stone, such as Las Pilillas de Requena, amphorae, documents and remains of grape pips trace the wine culture of Utiel-Requena back to the origins of wine in the Iberian Peninsula. The antiquity, continuity and uniqueness of the native Bobal grape variety are the values on which this cultural landscape, known as Bobal Territory, is based, and which is eligible to be recognised as a UNESCO World Heritage Candidate.
The Bobal variety is the star of the PDO, occupying 70% of the total vineyard surface. The wines made with Bobal have an intense and characteristic colour, with a full body and complex and fruity aromas. Of the 21,876 hectares planted with Bobal grapes, 47% are vineyards over 40 years old, perfectly adapted to the area's highland climate and dry summers. The Bobal variety offers great oenological potential. Advances in the production and cultivation of this variety in recent years have resulted in wines with extraordinary organoleptic qualities that perfectly convey the character and personality of the Utiel-Requena DO. R&D projects in viticulture, such as Valora Bobal and InnoBobal, enhance the value of the native Bobal variety, maintain biodiversity and increase the region's sustainability.
The Utiel-Requena PDO is located on the inland plateau of the province of Valencia, 70 km from the sea, in an area with a Mediterranean climate with continental features and an average altitude of 750 metres. The production area covers 33,000 hectares of vineyards and includes nine municipalities: Caudete de las Fuentes, Camporrobles, Fuenterrobles, Requena, Siete Aguas, Sinarcas, Utiel, Venta del Moro and Villargordo del Cabriel. 110 wineries and 4,977 winegrowers work in this region where red wines predominate, especially the varieties Bobal (majority and native), Tempranillo, Garnacha Tinta, Garnacha Tintorera, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Syrah, Pinot Noir, Petit Verdot and Cabernet Franc. As for whites, the varieties grown are Tardana (also called Planta Nova, it is indigenous), Macabeo, Merseguera, Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Parellada, Verdejo and Moscatel de grano menudo.
The headquarters of the Control Board is located in Utiel, in a building known as Bodega Redonda. An architectural jewel dating from 1891, it has been refurbished and converted into a Vine and Wine Museum. A must for wine lovers, it offers guided tours with an aroma workshop and commented wine tasting. For more information, see the Wine Agenda 2023.