The DO area is located in the province of Oruense in the northwest Spanish region Galicia
near the Portuguese border. The name means "Golden Valley" because gold was extracted here in antiquity. The vineyards on slate and limestone soil cover around 1,500 hectares of vineyards, most of which are on both sides of the slopes of the River Sil and its tributaries. The main municipalities are A Rúa, Carballeda, El Barco de Valdeorras, Larouco, O Bolo, Petín, Rubiá and Vilamartín. The continental climate is characterized by hot summers, long autumns and cold winters. The area was marked by the white grape variety Godello
(which by the phylloxera
almost disappeared), which was rediscovered and reactivated here. Other white varieties are Palomino, Doña Blanca and Albarello. The red wines are mainly made from the Mencía variety; Garnacha, Tempranillo, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merenzao (María Ardoña) are also approved.