When in 1992 Miguel Ángel Rodríguez began to excavate the winery in the bowels of Albelda de Iregua, he was beginning to give shape to an exciting project.
The wines of the 200 Monges family are the reference of the winery. Long-aged wines that reveal the essence of the land and the landscape.
Unique wines that turn time into their best ally to grow in complexity and maturity until they express the true story of their origin.
Bodegas Vinícola Real was created with the idea of a small production winery specializing in high quality wines from its own vineyards. It is a traditional wine-growing model whose main objective is to obtain original and unique wines.
The winery is located in Albelda de Iregua, a small town with only 3000 inhabitants, built very near the chapel of Santa Catalina, the only part that is conserved today is the monastery of San Martín de Albelda, a monastery of great importance in the area during the Middle Ages.
Bodegas Vinícola Real has 18 hectares of vineyards, mostly old vines which cultivates the Tempranillo grape, but also some with Graciano and Mazuelo, all typical Riojan varieties. The white varieties that they work with are Viura, Malvasía, Garnacha Blanca and Moscatel.
Bodegas Vinícola Real believes in the concept of traditional viticulture with different compositions of soils and various types of weather, allowing them to select the grapes and produce an excellent quality wine with a lot of character.
The harvest is done manually and very carefully to avoid breaking the bunches. The grapes arrive at the winery in small boxes of 15kg.
Once in the winery, the grape bunches go through a manual selection process and the grapes are separated from those that are not perfectly healthy. The thickest part of the stalk is removed carefully so as not to break the grains and then the selected grapes are used to make the Reserva and Gran Reserva wines.
The selection of the grapes is an important process for the aging of the wine. Bodegas Vinícola Real use oak barrels that rest in an excavated rock cave which naturally facilitates constant optimal conditions throughout the year, both in temperature and humidity.
Once the barrel aging is complete, the wine is bottled and stored for a while before it appears on the market.
The choice of this clayey soil for the construction of the contemporary cave habitat that is today the heart of Bodegas Vinícola Real, continues the tradition of those hermits who, more than a thousand years ago, dug a set of caves in these rocks for worship that were the humble origin of a great medieval cultural center; the disappeared monastery of San Martín de Albelda.
The wine culture of Rioja has its historical roots in the Middle Ages and the medieval monasteries. Bodegas Vinícola Real and its flagship 200 Monges were born from these ancestors of the precedent, as this brand is a tribute to the history of Albey de Iregua.
As you enter the beautiful Bodegas Vinícola Real – 200 Monges environment you will find yourself escaping the realities of life and diving into the peaceful aromas of the hotel-boutique located inside the winery itself.
The winery consists of beautiful labyrinth of underground galleries where the most exclusive wines age: 200 Monges, Cueva del Monge, Confesor etc
A cave habitat that evokes the history and millennial cultural legacy of the 200 forgotten monks.
Whilst you enjoy the relaxed ambiance of the environment, you can explore the storytelling of local, personal and family history.
The experience visitors enjoy at Bodegas Vinícola Real – 200 Monges connects with the winery’s roots in Albeda de Iregua (La Rioja, Spain) by telling the story of the extinct Monastery San Martín of Albeda de Iregua, one of the most important cultural centres in the medieval Spain (10th Century).
The story of San Martín Monastery with those 200 scribe monks creates an exceptional natural, oenological and cultural heritage that allows the winery to root it's wines within the village where part of our vineyards are lcoated.
This story is the reason behind the 200 Monges name selection, putting history at the heart of the brand.
A visit to the Cueva del Monge is a must where the facsimile of the Albeldense Codex -year 974- is exhibited, a true jewel of medieval miniatures.
Visitors can also go on the Route of the 200 Forgotten Monks, a tour of the Suso and Yuso Monasteries - World Heritage Sites - and a little-known rock scrptorium that have a beautiful story to tell.
Since the first vintage, 1994, 200 Monges has not stopped reaping the international awards and wide acceptance from the public.