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

  • Grenache

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

  • Tempranillo

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

  • Cabernet Sauvignon

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

  • Graciano

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

  • Malbec

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

  • Macabeo

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

Subregions of Rioja

Popular Wineries in Rioja View all

  • Bodegas Beronia

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

  • Bodegas Marques de Caceres

    The name of this wine. Marques de Caceres was lent by D. Vicente Noguera y Espinosa de los Monter...

  • Marqués de Riscal

    Wines of the Herederos de Marqués de Riscal has always been a leading and pioneering company i...

  • Castillo Labastida

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

  • Bodegas Baron de Ley

    A dream come true, BARÓN DE LEY is a winery which was devised and founded in 1985 by a small grou...

  • Bodegas Muriel

    Bodegas Muriel markets the brands Muriel, Vina Muriel, Baron de Barbon, Solariego, El Somo and Mo...

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Rioja on Snooth

  • Had a small BBQ with another couple tonight - sort of a smallish celebration. ... Vina Equia tempranillo based Rioja Reserva.  Beautiful, rich and ladened with dark berry fruits, anise, spice and solid tannins accompanied with juicy acidit Read More

    Forum post in the topic Whatcha drinking tonight?


  • Vina Equia Tempranillo Reserva Rioja 2009

    Snoothrank:

    In a word rich. Loads of dark berry fruits, anise, earthy notes, green herbals lead to a palate that echos with additional vanilla, red currant and solid framing tannins with great acidity. 90 points - drink now - Paul Read More

    Wine review by rckr1951


  • That I would like to try before I die that I have not already had?There are ... Unico, although I've had Rioja wines going back many decades, and I never had the 1982 or 1989 Haut Brion or Petru Read More

    Forum post in the topic 5 wines to try before you die


  • Marqués de Riscal Reserva 2011

    Snoothrank:

    Light fruit on the nose, but, also, some fungal notes. Light red fruit, maybe, plum. on the tip of the tongue. VERY sedate tannins. This one is so easy to drink--no harshness no bitterness. A (minty?) herbal suggestion on the rear palalte. Excellent QPR. Read More

    Wine review by EMark


  • Shelf price:  $16.99.  With my 20% off coupon: $13.59 Is it ... ... for it.Do I hear $20 for my Rioja Reserva?Too late.  I've popped it.A very pleasant wine.  Light red fruit on entry.  Very mellow on the tannin.  So, it goes down pretty easily--no harshness or bitterness.  I bit of an herbal hint on the rear palate--mint?&nbs Read More

    Forum post in the topic Value Wines - under $20 USD...


  • The words 'higher quality' seem a little subjective to me. In Rioja in Spain or Chianti in Italy the words 'reserva' or Grande reserva' indicate time the wine has spent in oak barrels which is a matter of fact rather than opinion Read More

    Forum post in the topic Value Wines - under $20 USD...


  • Al - it means nothing legally in the US. Jess Jackson made himself a ... ... nothing to do with a reserve Rioja. And because the requirement in Rioja has to do with aging, people are making non-reserve wines and selling them at higher prices than the reserves, calling them things like Vendimia Seleccionada, Roble, Viñas Viejas, or something of... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Value Wines - under $20 USD...


  • Emark - you're right to a large extent, and there's a LOT of swill in ... from Marques de Riscal in Rioja, you can get the reserve for around $15. They've been making wine since the 1800s and aren't amortizing any of their acquisition costs any more. And that cheap wine can age for years. We don't have anything comparable.Yet. Maybe in time we... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Value Wines - under $20 USD...


  • Great time with my "Somm Ladies" tasting a good variety of ... Conte ... ... Conte Valdemar '15 - Rioja Rosé• Château d'Aqueria '14 - Tavel Rosé• Domaine Queylus '13 - Pinot Noir• Reif Estates '14 - Pinot Noir• Domaine Queylus '12 - Merlot/Cabinet Franc• Casal Garcia Duoro '15Honorable mentions: • River Road ' 15 - Cabernet• River Road ' 16 - ... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Weekend Wines - Post Pictures...


  • Inspired by VV, I had Rioja last night.  But first some catching up:Saturday went out with friends to a Burmese place in Larkspur (Marin County for folks not familiar with it). We were trying to get into Village Sake in Fairfax, but that was going to prove impossible, so we went with Plan B.  Brought wines I thought would be flexible.  For reaso... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Whatcha drinking tonight?


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