Rioja Makes a Perfect Match

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With their magnificent victory in this year's World Cup still fresh in everyone’s mind, this is a great time to take a look at the wines of Spain. Spain’s wine scene has never been more exciting, whether you look to the most recently developed regions or turn to Rioja, the heart of Spanish wine country.

When thoughts turn to Rioja, we frequently focus on the great Reserva wines, sometimes overlooking the other classics that make Rioja such a food-friendly and flexible menu pairing partner. These Reserva wines, based on the noble grape Tempranillo, should of course be featured front and center, but one of the glories of Rioja is that it's really a family of wines, and there's one perfect for almost every occasion.

The wines of Rioja are uniquely identified by their strictly regulated aging that distinguishes the fresh, fruity Joven wines from the deep, layered, and infinitely complex Gran Reservas. One of the beautiful things about Rioja is that, unlike so many of the greatest wines from around the world, almost every bottle of Rioja is ready to be enjoyed when it’s released. While the best can age effortlessly, there is no need to dig in one's cellar for a stunning bottle of Rioja!
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Styles of Rioja

Learn about the different styles of Rioja and how to pair each with food.

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It's no easy feat to offer such a broad array of ready-to-drink wines, but once you understand the way Rioja is labeled, it’s easy to see how there really is a Rioja for every occasion. I’ve put together an easy-to-follow chart that lists not only the aging requirements for each type of Rioja, but each wine’s typical characteristics and some inspired food pairings as well!

Vibrant Rioja wants to buy you dinner!


The home of the amazing Tempranillo grape wants to prove to you that Rioja wines are the best food pairing wines in the world. They will prove it by taking you and a friend to one of the best restaurants in your area. All you have to do is submit a recipe that you think will go with Rioja wines. Three winners will be selected, and each recipe will be published in Vibrant Rioja's monthly e-newsletter.  Enter today!

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