Spain’s top women winemakers

Katia Alvarez 


Having headed up the winemaking team at Martin Codax for more than a decade, Katia Alvarez knows a thing or two about Albariño. Her twists on the grape include an extended lees aged Albariño and a late harvest expression. Having been inspired to pursue a career in wine by her parents, who made experimental bottlings at home, a degree in agricultural engineering ignited her desire to make wine full time.

Keen for her Albariños to express their origin, getting to grips with the grape has not been without its challenges. “Understanding the complexity of Albariño has been difficult. It’s a grape you have to handle with care for it to achieve its highest expression, but it’s one of the most versatile grapes I know,” she says.

Who or what made you want to become a winemaker? The wine world has been always present in my home. I was born in a family in a small village where we always had vineyards and my family produced wine for home consumption. Since I was a kid that world kept my attention and I loved it. When I grew up I decided to study agricultural engineering. We visited a winery in my second year and I felt in love. That day I decided I was going to be a winemaker.

How would you describe your winemaking style? My style is based on respect. I always seek to achieve the maximum potential from a variety while respecting its tipicity, the weather conditions and of course its own individuality from the plot it comes from. After all, wine is born in the vineyard.

What is the single wine you’re most proud of so far and why? Martín Códax Vindel is a very special wine that comes from a single vineyard where the viticulture is extreme and Albariño shows a different profile that normal – it’s riper, more mature, complex and spicy.

Has it been tough getting to the top of a male dominated industry? It is evident that the wine industry has thus far been led by men but since day one I have been always being supported by Bodegas Martín Códax, where I’ve had the opportunity to develop as a winemaker and have been given the tools to grow and create my own team.

What has been the biggest challenge of your career so far? Trying to fully understand the complexities of Albariño. It’s a variety that you have to handle with care in order to be able to show its highest expression.

Desert island wine: Martin Codax Vindel – it’s the jewel in my crown.

8 Responses to “Spain’s top women winemakers”

  1. Jose Ruisanchez says:

    thanks and you should have mentioned Doña Maria of Montebello/Osborne, a true pathbreaker for the others

  2. Ana says:

    I am very happy when I see a woman leading wine projects with such a success. Congratulations!!

  3. Jacob says:

    Daphne Gloria is not spaniard, should not have been included. She is a US citizen born in Switzerland, making 1 wine in Spain, and selling spanish wines in the United States of America.

  4. Women should not be downgraded from mere housewife alone. Even a housewife is a hard job, it’s a 24/7 workout. Now with regards to winemaking, it doesn’t state in any book or any law that a woman cannot be a winemaker. If a woman is equipped with the knowledge of doing so then so be it. Whether winemaker, engineer, carpenter, driver or any hard our jobs, we should acknowledge equality whatever genre we are in.

  5. Woman should come in front of the society without minding all restrictions from the family and the society. This article really an inspiration for woman who want to break the wall of restrictions. waiting for more posts like this.

  6. Feeling very proud to hear this.A women can do any thing.Very glad to hear that a women can lead something and made a success.It will be very inspiring for the whole other women community.

  7. showbox apk says:

    Really such a amazing post dear.

  8. chrisgail says:

    I want to say those women congratulation on their success.

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