Valencia is one of Spain’s major cities and its largest wine-shipping port. The province surrounding the city is also called Valencia, together with the autonomía region of Valencia as provincial capital. As if that is not complicated enough, Valencia is also the name given to a DO wine area. There are two other DO territories: Utiel-Requena in Valencia province and Alicante, the province bearing its name.
The growers of Valencia would prefer that there should be one large DO area of Valencia with three sub-regions which would be permitted to bear their own name on the label. This would enable them to use grapes harvested throughout the region so that reasonable quality could be ensured in poor years. In the best years the sub-regions would make their own wines in their own ways. The fact that this would cause monumental confusion among their consumers does not appear to have dawned on these creative Valencianos, but they continue to try to bring their plans to fruition. The growers of Utiel- Requena and Alicante of course have no time for these plans which only serve the interests of the Valencianos.
Valencia still produces an enormous lake of vino common or vin ordinaire or plonk in the English vernacular, to the great concern of the agriculture commissioner of the European Community who is trying to reduce the enormous wine lake.
Valencia DO is mainly dependent on export of its wines, chiefly in bulk. The trade is dominated by huge concerns which have specialised in this trade. Medium-sized and small businesses are not important in either their numbers or their volume. Yet a change in affairs seems on the hand now that increasing numbers of bottles of Valencia wine are to be found on the shelves of Spanish supermarkets. This will probably never change the export-led attitude of the big Valencian wine producers, to the sorrow of both the Spanish government and European authorities. There is still far too much mediocre wine produced in Valencia.
The region is subdivided into four sub-areas: Alto Turia (in the north-west of Valencia province), Clariano (in the south of Valencia province), Moscatel de Valencia (in the centre), and Valentino (also in the centre). So far as the geology of the four sub-areas, this is dependent on the contours on which they stand. Alto Turia is the highest and most hilly of the four and its vineyards are situated between 1,312 and 2,296 feet (400 and 700 metres).
Alto Turia Blancos are fresh, light wines made wholly with Mersequera. Valencia and Valentino Blancos are produced from a mixture of Merseguera, Planta Fina, Pedro Ximénez, and Malvasía and are available in seco (dry), semi-seco (medium dry) and dulce (sweet) forms. Clariano Blanco Seco is produced from Merseguera, Tortosi and Malvasía. Drink the dry Spanish wines as an aperitif or with fish and shellfish. The slightly sweeter wine can be drunk as an aperitif if you like that kind of thing. The sweet types are best avoided, or if this is not possible then serve with a fresh fruit salad. You can drink this Spanish wine 46.4- 50.0°F (8-10°C) for seco/semi-seco and 42.8-46.4°F(6-8°C) for dulce wines. Valencia, Valentino and Clariano Rosados are fresh and light and have little to say for themselves. These rosados main contribution to a meal is their discretion. Drink this Spanish wine 50-53.6°F (10-12°C).