The D.O. Calatayud is located in the Aragon region located north-east of central Spain, west of D.O. Carinena and south of D.O. Campo de Borja, defined by the Sierra de la Virgen mountain range. It achieved D.O. status as recently as 1990, presenting mostly the bold red wines that have been cultivated here for centuries; Grenache is the D.O.’s dominant grape variety. The vines for Cruz de Piedra are over 80 years old, many over 100. In total, 650 acres have been planted between 800 and 1200 metres above sea level. Soils here are too poor to support most crops, made of red loam, marl, sandstone and slate. The continental climate of hot summers and cool winters, combined with miserly soils make for very intense wines with a lot of varietal character.
Cruz de Piedra translates as “Cross of Stone”, and refers to the stone crosses that mark the Pilgrim’s Road to Santiago de Compostela that runs through the region. A particularly beautiful cross near the vineyards gave the winery its name.
“Spain can field all sorts of a deeply sweet and juicy reds from out-of-the-way corners such as Calatayud, which is south-east of Rioja and just west of Cariñena. Garnacha (Grenache) can produce some quite stunningly welcoming wine here, but tends to be rather scorned by the Spaniards themselves in favour of Tempranillo which they see as nobler (but not nearly so good at producing wines for early enjoyment). Cruz de Piedra […] is a steal at the price.” – Jancis Robinson on Cruz de Piedra, JancisRobinson.com