10,000 hectares of owned land under vine and over 3,000 farmer partners make Coviñas the perfect guide when it comes to discovering the fascinating wines of Spain’s eastern Mediterranean coast. Grupo Coviñas is the undisputed leading producer in the region, holding over 40% of the land under vine in Utiel-Requena, and as such offers the ideal opportunity to get to know the wines that are produced in this area, which has over a thousand years of winemaking history.
During your visit to Grupo Coviñas you will learn about the different winemaking methods used in our wines and sparkling Cavas, along with the history of the people of the region, their stories, myths and traditions. Not only will you learn about our wines, you will get to know our way of life.Take the chance to explore the area and enjoy the natural and man-made charms of this inland part of Valencia, nurtured by the Magro and Cabriel rivers, and with a heritage rich in gastronomy and local fiestas.
Discover the wines of the Utiel-Requena DOP (Protected Designation of Origin) with Grupo Coviñas.
In Requena, one of Spain’s largest municipal areas, you can visit the medieval quarter of the “Villa” or Old Town, named a Historic and Artistic Site of national significance in 1966, and stroll around streets steeped in history and visit some of the main sights, such as the churches of Salvador and Santa María, with their imposing Gothic fronts; the Church of Saint Nicholas, itself a “Bien de Interés Cultural” (BIC) or official Site of Cultural Interest; visit the Fortress, a castle dating from Moorish times that has been razed and rebuilt over the centuries, the fifteenth-century Torre del Homenaje or “Tower of Tribute”, or the “Casa Museo de la Seda” (the Silk House-Museum), which, set on the Moorish wall ramparts, gives a real insight into the significance that the silk industry once had here.
The heart of Requena is the Plaza de la Villa, from where one can go down into the atmospheric Caves of the Villa, a complex of 22 underground caves dating from the era of Muslim rule (the twelfth and thirteenth centuries), which were dug out of the rock itself and used for centuries for wine and food storage, for storing grain and even as a place of refuge.
Don’t leave without visiting the Palace of El Cid, a Gothic palace on the spot that, according to legend, was where Rodrigo Díaz de Vivar (El Cid) had his home in Requena, and where the marriages of his daughters to the Heirs of Carrión are said to have been arranged. Today this is the site of the Wine Museum, telling the unique story of the wine of Requena, showing its landscape and history, along with antique implements formerly used in the making and storing of wine.
Still in the township of Requena is the Solana de Las Pilillas archaeological site, one of the oldest winemaking sites found in the whole Iberian Peninsula (dating from the seventh to the fifth centuries BC). You can see four stone troughs carved out of the rock with a series of connected structures used in the making and storing of wine.
Requena also offers its own deliciously hearty gastronomy. The cured meats and sausages have their own Protected Geographical Indication (IGP – Indicación Geográfica Protegida), and there are traditional dishes to be enjoyed, like “morteruelo” (a meat terrine), ajoarriero (a blend of potatoes, cod, garlic, egg and oil), the hot, meat-based “gazpachos” (not to be confused with the cold Andalusian version), the “arroz de matanza” (a seasonal rice stew) or potatoes in broth, all a perfect match for the wines of the Utiel-Requena DO and the local sparkling Cavas. As for the local Fiestas, of particular note are the “Feria del Embutido Artesano” (Cured Meat and Sausage Fair), which takes place in February, and the “Fiesta de la Vendimia” (Grape Harvest Festival), which is held at the end of August and beginning of September.
The area, with the Hoces del Cabriel Natural Park close by, also offers beautiful countryside, with a range of different activities. There are several agencies that offer activity tourism, including scenic routes, rafting, hydrospeed and a lot more.
The other main local town is Utiel, which has its own labyrinth of underground cellars, formerly used for winemaking, some of which are open for visitors. Other notable sights are the Church of Our Lady of the Assumption, the Casa Consistorial (Town Hall) and the Convent of La Merced and the Church and Convent of San Francisco.
But if there is one building that stands out, it is the circular “Bodega Redonda”, headquarters of the Utiel-Requena DOP regional wine authority and home to the Vine and Wine Museum of the Valencia region. As its name suggests, this 1891 building is round in shape, and it houses a collection of winegrowing and winemaking tools and implements used in wine cellars and winemaking labs, along with a sequence of panels that show the history and origin of the wines of the region, and the permitted grape varieties. The upper level holds a collection of the wines of the Denominación de Origen and a fun hands-on training kit of wine-related aromas known as “El Taller de los Sentidos” (“The Workshop of the Senses”).