Rioja Wine

The Rioja region of Spain produces one of the world’s finest, and most long lived wines: Rioja. Rioja's renaissance, in the latter half of the 19th century, was a direct result of the phyloxera bug that decimated vineyards around the globe. While English merchants came to Rioja to replace their French imports, the wines here actually have much more in common with Chianti. Both wines are blend relying heavily on one grape, in this case Tempranillo. Like Chianti’s Sangiovese, Tempranillo usually produces a relatively high acid wine of medium to medium-full body. Tempranillo tends to produce wines with a dusty, leathery edge to their raspberry and blackberry fruit tones. With additions of Graciano, Mazuela and Grancha the wines of Rioja can take on additional layers of flavor and aroma but the tradition of extended oak aging for Rioja's great wines contributes an even more obvious imprint. While the Spaniards have traditionally been a fan of the strong vanilla and coconut component that American oak Read more »

Mentor for Rioja Wines

Richard Jennings

Wine writer (and HR exec). I write a weekly column for Huffington Post, wine book reviews for NY Journal of Books, and my blog is http://www.RJonWine.com. I have over 38,000 tasting notes on CellarTracker, where I'm the most "favorited" TN author.

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Popular wines made in Rioja under $20

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Varietals Produced in Rioja View all

  • Macabeo

    Macabeo is Spain’s most widely planted grape. From there, it has made its way to southern France’s Roussillon region,...

  • Malbec

    History of the grape: Some believe Malbec is named after a Hungarian peasant who spread plantings along the French co...

  • Graciano

    Though it is easily the most interesting and unique red grape in Rioja, its yields are low, it is prone to downy mild...

  • Tempranillo

    History of the grape: Origins of Tempranillo are murky. It could be indigenous to the Spanish countryside, or it coul...

  • Grenache

    You’re a member of the ‘Rhône Ranger’ band. Your groupies think you’re ‘hot’, even when you're boozy and "strung out"...

  • Cabernet Sauvignon

    “King of the Red Wine Grapes.” The colonizer of the vineyards, pushing native wine grapes into its shadows. The Caber...

Subregions of Rioja

Popular Wineries in Rioja View all

  • Marqués de Vargas

    Winery The winery Marqués de Vargas was built in 1989 on the Hacienda Pradolagar Estate in Lo...

  • Bodegas LAN

    Year… 1972. Bodegas LAN is founded and named after the initials of the 3 provinces in the Rioja D...

  • Bodegas Palacios Remondo

    Palacios focused his efforts on the Crianza, La Montesa, a Garnacha-based blend from south-faci...

  • Castillo Labastida

    Labastida Wineries and Vineyards combines the traditional wine-making ethos with the latest techn...

  • Bodegas Beronia

    Bodegas Beronia is a winery in Rioja founded in 1973 by a group from the local gastronomic soci...

  • Bodegas Baigorri

    "Bodegas Baigorri bases its work on a value of duality and on the xcellence of its products and ...

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Rioja on Snooth

  • Not to mention words to live by...I also find Italian whites a little bitter, ... including an all-Graciano Rioja that I have had before.&nbs Read More

    Forum post in the topic Best wines for under $20


  • Azpilicueta Blanco 2014

    Snoothrank:

    No written review

    Wine review by Dpupo


  • Il Marroneto Madonna delle Grazie (a Riserva) was the 2001 Brunello.  The ... kitchen, and had opened the Rioja a while before he got there, so he missed some initial fireworks on the Caceres.  It started off completely secondary and beyond, like all mushroom and damp leaves, but it actually got fruitier over time, which I attribute to VA, but... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Some wine had by Snoothers in...


  • A few of us met in San Diego last Friday for some wine and company at the ... ... ... 1986 Marques de Caceras Rioja, 1961 Oddero Barolo, 1999 Kiralyudvar Tokaji, 2007 Donnhoff Kabinett Oberhauser Leistenberg (Nahe), and later a 1964 Marques de Riscal Rioja!Consensus red of the night was the Oddero. Good medium red, bricking color. It didn't h... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Some wine had by Snoothers in...


  • Campo Viejo Rioja Gran Reserva 2009

    Snoothrank:

    Earth, forest floor and deep rich black fruit on the nose with notes of chocolate and a hint of tobacco leaf. Nicely soft in the mouth, this is perfectly balanced with nice red currant and ripe cherry freshness showing on top of zesty acidity and a creamy texture. Finishes light with lovely spice. Read More

    Wine review by Snooth Editorial


  • Did someone mention shellfish?  Today was a real treat, as I started off ... Crianza Tempranillo red from Rioja.  Their menu said they had a 2010 bottle but they brought out a 2012; I asked to see the wine steward about the discrepancy but I accepted the later bottle with his promise to update their wine list.  The wine was very nice and a goo... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Weekday Wines


  • Kirkland Signature Rioja Reserva 2010

    Snoothrank:

    Not your fathers Rioja. Brick red in the glass with lots of red fruit on the nose. Medium weight and fruit forward with good acidity finishing with light tannins to a really long fruity finish. Simple wine, reminds me of a Barbera. Read More

    Wine review by RandyFisher


  • Definitely 2nd Spain - CVNE if you can pull off the Crianza and Rioja Blanc that'd be great but it sounds like you know your customers and they want to buy American.Here are some American suggestions...Napa Cab - Rutherford Ranch Cabernet Sauvignon - A must!Napa Chard - Heitz Chardonnay- Think this is still $20 or less!CA Bubbles - Roederer Estate Read More

    Forum post in the topic Best wines for under $20


  • Muga Reserva Rioja Unfilterd 2011

    Snoothrank:

    Something of a chemical or alcoholic nose. Quite light on the fruit on entry. Medium-bodied. Light on tannin. Noticeable acid. Nothing really wrong with this wine, but nothing really grabs me. As the wine warms a bitI just pulled it from my cellarcomponents seem to be more integrated. Now, the fruit seems more subtle, not light. Tannin a... Read More

    Wine review by EMark


  • You'll notice, Mark, the term is in English, so this is aimed at the export ... ... Moving up to Muga in the Rioja, they have traditionally per 225L barrel used three to four egg whites separated from their yolks  (used to cook with the leftover yolks but current hygiene laws require their destruction), mixed with salt and wine, deposited at th... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Whatcha drinking tonight?


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