New wine quality level introduced in Spain in 2003 for privileged areas that correspond to a DO (Vino de Pago) or DOCa (Vino de Pago Calificado) classification. However, these are still above and form the top of the quality pyramid. The designation is somewhat confusing, as these areas are often referred to as single vineyards, but this is not obligatory. A "Vino de Pago" is considered to be an area of land with an edaphic character (soil-dependent, climatically conditioned vegetation). It must have its own microclimate that distinguishes it from its surroundings. The area must be traditionally known for producing special wine qualities. The name should have been used to designate special wines for at least five years. The conditions for Vino de Pago status must be set by each autonomous region of Spain itself. The bodega must submit a formal application for this and document the required special features regarding climate, soil types, vegetation cycle, etc. for five years.
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