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Dona Blanca grapes

by Dec 23, 20160 comments

Dona Blanca (the Spanish White Lady) is a very popular white Spanish as well as a Portuguese grape variety that produces excellent white wine.

Dona Blanca

This wine is grown majorly in Spain’s Galicia region lying in the north- west. It is also grown primarily throughout Portugal spreading from the Douro going to the northern regions.

Dona Blanca is a permitted grape variety in the Spanish DOS (Denominacion de Origens) of Valdeorras as well as Monterrei in Galicia and Bierzo in Castile and Leon.

This white wine grape variety has many names. In Spain, it is known as Dona Blanca but, in the Valdeorras of Spain, it is known by the name Valenciana. In Portugal, the grape is known as Dona Branco.

There is another renowned grape variety in Spain known as Merseguera. It is still a question that is Maerseguera Dona Blanca, and is known by the name Maerseguera in some parts of Spain. The answer to this question is still a mystery.

Wine grape varieties

The grapes are particularly thick- skinned. The grapes lend some bitterness and astringency to the skin even on the slightest contact as it produces high amount of polyphenols in the skin.

This grape variety is found in many blended wines, the most famous being Godello. But, also, this grape is used in making other dry wines.

The other synonyms of Dona Blanca are Alvaro de Soire, Boal, Alvaro de Sousa, Boal Cachudo, Dame Blanche, Colhao de Gallo, Graciolo, Dona Branca, Graciosa, Malvasia Branca, Graziolo, Malvasia Grossa, Santo Estevao, Moza Fresca, Voal Esparrapado and Voal Cachudo.


The history of Dona Blanca dates back to the 20th century.

The wine took a grip during the late 20th century when the people developed an affinity towards dry wine varieties and blended wines.

This grape variety has been getting cultivated in Spain since centuries.

It was comprised of Malysia Bianca which is an ancient variety of grape that is believed to be from Greece and Garnache Blanca which is a white grape variety of Garnacha.

The popularity of this wine rose with each passing day and it became a regular in various blends. Not only in blends, was this grape also used in making distinctive white wines that are dry and delicate.


Dona Blanca is grown in the western region of Iberian Peninsula, particularly in the northern regions of Portugal and in Galicia, Spain. The thick skin of the grapes contributes to its amazing production in the wetter maritime climate.

The wine is fermented separately in neutral as well as new oak barrels and in stainless steel tanks. In the barrels it is kept for about four months. This grape variety is very late ripening.

Characteristics of Dona Blanca

Dona Blanca has many amazing characteristics that make it the wine of choice. The perfume content of this variety is on the higher side, making it very aromatic.

Also, it has a lot of phenolic character. The wine is a little bitter, but, in a very distinct way. The slight bitterness that can be noted in the wines of Monterrei is due to this grape variety.

The wine carries floral notes. It gives an intense aroma of flowers, but, in taste it gives a fruity delight to the taste buds. It gives a taste of gooseberry and pear on the tongue.

Also, it imparts a flavour of fennel. The twist in the taste is the hint of lime zest. It intensifies the taste of the wine. The wine is dry and does not possess any amount of sweetness.

The colour of the wine is straw- yellow. It carries pale golden glints. The wine is crisp and carries no amount of acidity. It is very delicate and light wine.

Food Pairings with Dona Blanca

The intense fruity notes of Dona Blanca make it a great option for relaxed summer afternoons. It is the apt wine for an easy breezy get together. You can pair this wine with a variety of food.

It really goes well with roast veggies. Also, you can serve this wine with Caprese salad, pasta with light sauce, rice pudding and fruit tarts.

You can also serve Dona Blanca with mussel pancakes. This wine also tastes great with some soft cheese.

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Michael Bredahl

Michael Bredahl

Wine Writer

Michael is an online enthusiast, with a lot of knowledge about online marketing. Traveling around the world to hunt for the perfect wine. Latest on Sicily, where Etna has a huge impact on the taste, which is strong with a bitter aftertaste for the youngest wines, but older wines are fantastic. Drinking wine, and writing about them, are one the passions. Remember to drink responsibly 🙂

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