List of Vinos de Pago why is there such a lack of clarity?

Let's start with the obvious: 1. Why is finding a definitive list of wineries in this classification so difficult considering this is supposed to be the "pinnacle" of Spainish wine quality pyramid? 2. How can this level of quality ever be taken seriously as the "grand crus" of Spanish wine....when my cell phone bill is more expensive than 90% of these wines in the marketplace.3. Whatever the number of classified wineries that are currently approved is at today (or in the pipeline of approval).....as this list grows how does its significance NOTt become obsolete? 4. Finally, does this look 1/2 way correct? 

List of Vinos de Pago

Name

Location

Region

Varietal(s)

Year

Area (ha)

Altitude (meters)

1

Dominio de Valdepusa (Marques de Griñón)

Toledo

DO Mentrida

Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Petit Verdot, Graciano

2003

52

2

Finca Élez (Manuel Manzaneque)

Albacete

DO Castilla-La Mancha

Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Syrah, Tempranillo, Chadonnay

2003

34

1080

3

Pago Guijoso

Albacete

DO Castilla-La Mancha

Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Syrah, Chardonnay

2004

98

1000

4

Dehesa del Carrizal

Ciudad Real

DO Castilla-La Mancha

Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Petit Verdot, Syrah, Tempranillo, Chardonnay

2006

69

800 - 900

5

Pago de Arínzano

Navarra

DO Navarra (Tierra Estella)

Tempranillo, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon

2007

128

6

Prado de Irache

Navarra

DO Navarra (Tierra Estella)

Tempranillo, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon

2008

16

7

Pago de Señorio de Otazu

Navarra

DO Navarra (Valdizarbe)

Cabernet Sauvigon, Merlot, Tempranillo, Chardonnay

2009

115

8

Campo de la Guardia

Toledo

DO Castilla-La Mancha

Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Petit Verdot, Syrah, Malbec, Chardonnay

Aug-2009

81

9

Pago Florentino

Ciudad Real

DO Castilla-La Mancha

Cencibel (Tempranillo)

2009

58

10

Casa del Blanco

Ciudad Real

DO Castilla-La Mancha

Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot, Petit Verdot, Malbec, Tempranillo, Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc

Jun-2010

150

11

Pago El Terrerazo, de Bodegas Mustiguillo

Valencia

DO Utiel-Requena

Bobal, Granacha, Syrah

Sep-2010

89

800 - 824

12

Pago Calzadilla

Huete (Cuenca)

DO Ucles

Tempranillo, Garnacha, Cabernet Sauvignon, Garnacha Blanca, Syrah, Touriga Nacional 

Feb-2011

26

900 - 1000

13

Pago de Aylés

Aragon (Zaragoza)

DO Cariñena

Grenache, Tempranillo, Cabernet-Sauvignon, Merlot

2011

47

14

Pago de Los Balagueses

Valencia

DO Utiel-Requena

Syrah, Garnacha, Tintorera (Alicante Bouschet),  Merlot, Chardonnay

Feb-2011

18

15

Pago Vera de Estenas

Valencia

DO Utiel-Requena

Bobal, Cabernet Sauvignon, Tempranillo, Merlot, Chardonnay

2013

45

16

Finca Bolandín's Bodega Pago de Cirsus

Ablitas

DO Navarra (Tierra Estella)

Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Merlot, Tempranillo.

2014

137

395

17

El Pago de Vallegarcia

Retuerta del Bullaque (Ciudad Real)

DO Castilla-La Mancha

Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot, Viognier

Jun-2019

31

850

18

Pago de la Jaraba

El Provencio (Cuenca)

La Mancha DO

Tempranillo, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Graciano

Jun-2019

80

700

19

Pago Los Cerrillos

Argamasilla de Alba (Ciudad Real)

Castilla-La Mancha

Tempranillo, Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah

Jun-2019

20

Pago el Vicario

Ciudad Real

La Mancha DO

Tempranillo, Syrah, Garnacha Tinta, Cabernet Sauvignon, Graciano, Petit Verdot Merlot, Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc

Aug-2019

86

21

Pago Chozas Carrascal

San Antonio de Requena

DO Utiel-Requena

Cabernet Franc, Granacha, Tempranillo, Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc

Nov-2019

40

700 - 750

  • Miquel Hudin will be here shortly to link to a story he wrote telling you that it's all bs.

    Fact is, there is no pinacle anywhere. Grand Cru on a bottle of burgundy doesn't mean it's the best there is, and neither does having Vin de Pago status. There are a lot of decent wines, some really good wines, and some bad wines in this class. You're totally familiar with this concept already. Don't let this particular thing get to your head. 

    The guildsomm compendium is your best bet for up to date info as this (and others like it) changes. The team is always working hard for the best info, and if they miss anything there is a large enough community to point it out. Having this list, though, is as meaningless as having a complete and difinitive list as say Clos Vougeot producers. Some just don't matter. Cool chart, though. Totally going to comb through it for nuggets later. 

  • Oh, thankfully it's a holiday in Spain so I can chime in!

    Firstly, this list above needs to be eradicated. There are currently 19 official Vinos de Pago. And yes Jeremy, here's a link.

    The Compendium lists two others which were in process as well as Vera de Estenas (which was just made official this year despite applying in 2013) and El Vicario. These are all official at this point and there is an actual list of all the DOs and IGTs in Spain that's updated at random intervals which you can view here and was actually just revised last month. Even if the Pliegos have yet to be revised, that list is gospel.

    If you've pulled this list of 21 from the Decanter article that unfortunately has my name on it, disregard this. I sent them the actual list as defined by Spanish law back when I wrote that and they then edited it be incorrect for some reason that's beyond me and despite sending them repeated emails, they haven't fixed the problem. I suppose because it was a "sponsored post" and hey, who cares once the check has cleared, right?

    Why is it so hard to find an exact list? There are many reasons why and it's due to how fragmented things are in Spain and how stuff like this needs to go up and then back down a series of desks that now has Brussels at the top. That and officially there's this antiquated, "State Bulletin" in Spain (as well as in other EU countries) where these things need to be published before they're actual law and this isn't revised everyday and there's a back log.

    It puts me in an odd position as I have to defend Spain in some regard given that even with speaking (basic) French, I have a hard time weeding through French wine laws and as far as I know, there is no nice, long list of IGPs and IGTs there like there is in Spain.

    As to the value of Vino de Pago, that's been questioned for a long time which is why DOs like Priorat, Bierzo, and Rioja have all established their own vineyard classifications and also why Catalunya has a separate Vi de Finca which works just like Vino de Pago but actually has some solid wines in.

    Anyways, hope that helps!

  • As an NYU philosophy major, I appreciate the sentiment that "Grand Cru" does not make the wine. I truly would agree....but you are sugar coating it a little, to be honest. While there are great village wines in Burgundy....you'd probably opt for a Clos Vougeot with dinner 95% of the time over the latter. I've been a Somm since 2006. I remember this classification in its infancy.  Nearly, 14 years later (since I became a Somm)....there should be more clarity and sense of why this classification was created. Grand Cru in France has historical meaning (Cistercian Monks) as well as gives birth to some of the best Pinot and Chardonnay in Burgundy. But I take your point. 

  • I did use your article from Decanter. I've also read your comments on the web.  I was aware of the bureaucracies involved that handicapped the dissemination of information in a timely manner (thanks to your previous post).  Trust me I'm not some Trumpian American looking to criticize Spain. I love Spain. I've been many times to your country. I just don't get why 14 years later I revisit something....and it's like "pulling teeth" to understand what the aim was in this created tier in the Spanish wine law? I've seen (and agree) with your criticism of the Grandes Pago de Espana...but at least they have a website that helps you understand who they and some sort of mission statement to what they hope to promote. I would think to make Vinos de Pago's - "DO's" would make more sense to me at how they view themselves as something unique....or folding them into existing DO's to "raise the profile" of the existing wineries within that  DO. Still.....I think Wines of Spain or ICEX....should have a PDF that is easy to find in a web search when looking for an updated list of VP. 

  • And until they get their act together they'll continue to confuse the wine professionals they depend on to promote them. I think you're just going to chase your tail trying to figure out the "why" behind it all. It's their own loss in the mean time.

  • Vincent well said. So, far I've learned that a pyramid of quality is not really a pyramid of quality. That one of the more respected magazines in the wine world (Decanter) - doesn't care to get it "right". What's more closely aligned to a "chateaux classification" has been misrepresnted as a Grand Cru classification like you would see in Burgundy rather than the right bank Saint-Emilion Grand Cru applellation of Bordeaux. Or, is it more like the right bank Saint-Emilion Grand Cru Classification of Bordeaux because some of the wines are unremarkable? Hmm? And, as always....anything that happens in Brussels - sucks. 

  • I'm not Spanish btw. I'm 100% Californian.

  • Ah. You just clicked a light bulb for me. If this were another new world thing, we'd just glaze over it because the time that it takes to make sense and give clarity to a hierarchy system in wine takes decades. How long before the monks actually made sense of Burgundy? (And even that is flawed today) This doesn't matter because it's in it's infancy. The next generations* may see the v d Pago system as meaningful, but today, we're all sort of figuring it out. 

    *Provided they aren't burned by global climate change, which is more likely than a meaningful Pago list happening. 

  • Don't worry global climate change won't do anything meaningful in any wine region that you and I are concerned about.. ...So, >>we're all sort of figuring it out"<< Interesting take. The Spanish authorities didn't have a plan? They were just going to wing it and hope for the best? Better yet. Perhaps the Spanish governing body decided they would create this top tier to their wine quality pyramid and in true modern-day fashion would let the masses provide the feedback loop for what this classification will represent. Kind of like an Amazon review model. Or a CellarTracker aggregate score for a wine.  And, the concensus is??? 

  • Kindly, if there is only 19. Which 2 wineries do I drop? 

  • As far as I know, "Pago Chozas Carrascal" and "Pago de Cirsus" are not certified. They might be pending or they might have received it since the last official IGP and IGT list for Spain was published on November 11 but currently, they're not Vino de Pago.

  • According to John Radford Oct 12th, 2012  (God rest his soul) Bodegas Chozas Carrascal gets Vino de Pago status

    Also listed on Wine-searcher list of Vinos de Pago 
  • Pago de Cirus list themselves as a winery of Vino de Pago http://www.pagodecirsus.com/en/winery-cellar

    Last year Miguel had it included on his list...not sure if that was one of the corrections he tried to get decanter to make in post. www.decanter.com/.../

  • "Pago de Cirus list themselves as a winery of Vino de Pago"

    Good for them. Spanish wineries are notorious with this because if they get approved, they can list it on any vintage back to when they applied so they start selling it early. It's as disingenuous as someone stating "Master Sommelier" or "Master of Wine" just because they're working towards it.

    List these two if you want and I'm fully open to being wrong on both these counts with Chozas Carrascal and Cirsus but ultimately give a rat's ass since the whole thing has no teeth. But what's a fact is that they're not on the official list from Spain of all the IGPs and IGTs so in my book, they're not official. There are many stages where it can get gummed up despite it being "approved" at some point.

    For instance, this is the listing for València as of 11-11-2019:

    DOPs (6)

    Alicante DO
    PDO-ES-A1526
    El Terrerazo VP
    PDO-ES-A0940
    Los Balagueses VP
    PDO-ES-A0941
    Utiel-Requena DO
    PDO-ES-A0874
    Valencia DO
    PDO-ES-A0872
    Vera de Estenas VP
    PDO-ES-N1665

    IGP (1)

    Castelló VT
    PGI-ES-A1173

     

    And this is the listing for Navarra:

    DOPs (4)

    Navarra DO
    PDO-ES-A0127
    Pago de Arínzano VP
    PDO-ES-A0183
    Pago de Otazu VP
    PDO-ES-A0184
    Prado de Irache VP
    PDO-ES-A0182

    IGP (1)
    3 Riberas VT
    PGI-ES-A0128

  • It seems that Chozas Carrascal has been sitting in “Never Never Land” for several years—meaning that it has been approved by Valencia, and later by the Spanish Ministry of Agriculture (etc), followed by publication in the Boletín Oficial…but it has not yet been approved by the EU. Click here to see the listing (from September 2013) of the publication in the BOE. Click here to see Chozas Carrascal listed—along with the other 19 pagos—as a VdP of Spain on September 19, 2019 (scroll down to the very bottom of the document). I can find evidence that Chozas Carrascal was submitted to the EU for approval as a DOP in December of 2012, but none showing that it has moved onto the “published” stage. This is about as complicated as it can get, and I do not claim to have the definitive answers...just some info.