Rioja Alta Wine

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Rioja Alta is a subzone of La Rioja in Spain, considered to be the most important of the three subzones (the other two are Rioja Alavesa and Rioja Baja). The vineyards here are at high altitudes, producing wines with deep color, balanced acidity and gentle alcohol. Tempranillo is the main grape grown, often assisted with small levels of Graciano and Garnacha. The traditional style of wine-making calls for some barrel maturation, depending on the level of aging classification (see below). A well made Rioja has full body with toasty oakiness akin to root beer, earthy notes and expressive dark fruit flavors. 

Age Classifications:
*The youngest wines are simply “Riojas” (or “Sin Crianza”) and are typically less than a year old before bottling and release, with little or no oak aging. 
*Crianzas spend at least a year in oak and a year in bottle. 
*Rioja Reservas spend at least one year in oak and two in bottle. 
*Grand Reservas are aged at least Read more »

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Popular wines made in Rioja Alta under $20

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Varietals Produced in Rioja Alta View all

  • 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...

  • Macabeo

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

  • Albariño

    History of the grape: Legend has it that Cluny monks from Burgundy brought the parentage of the grape, either Rieslin...

  • Cabernet Sauvignon

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

  • Grenache

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

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Rioja Alta on Snooth

  • Bodegas Olarra Tempranillo Blend Rioja Otoñal Reserva 2005


    No written review

    Wine review by Phil wine guy

  • Vina Pomal Crianza. Bodegas Bilbainas 2011


    Found on - just a wonder! here are some notes from RP - 'The 2011 Vina Zaco changed labels and profile to a more modern style a few years ago and displays a darker shade of cherry color, ripe notes of red and black berries, flowers and a meaty palate where the wood is perfectly integrated with the fruit, which finally feels more classic... Read More

    Wine review by puhnner

  • Rioja Alta Arana Reserv 2004


    Excellent wine Read More

    Wine review by K276HB

  • Peciña Hermanos de Rioja Reserva 2005


    No written review

    Wine review by cmittelstadt

  • Bodegas Y Viñedos Heras Cordon Tempranillo Blend Rioja Vendimia Seleccionada 2004


    We are Broker of Wines, Spirits, Oils of Olive and exportable others. And We have concrete orders for his products. We invite him to know our page and put to your disposition for any doubt that him could arise. Expecting to be able to extend his turnover we seize the opportunity to greet.Best Regards Sir. ... Read More

    Wine review by INTEREXPO

  • Beronia Viura Rioja Blanco 2012


    Very tight on the nose with a hint of green melon and some lovely dried herb and almond shell top notes. Smooth and integrated in the mouth, this delivers a nice array of fresh lemon, slightly peachy and melon flavors on the palate but does lack a bit of complexity. A hint in creaminess and some faint nutty shadings add some detail to the backen... Read More

    Wine review by Gregory Dal Piaz

  • Cvne Rioja Monopole Blanco 2012


    Rather floral in the glass but with a restrained, earthy quality to the perfume which also picks up hints of grapefruit and a suggestion of green herb. Juicy up front,this gains a bit of flesh and roundness in the mouth where flavors of bruised peach and pear add nuance to the core of grapefruit pith and under-ripe pineapple fruit. A bit of almo... Read More

    Wine review by Gregory Dal Piaz

  • La Rioja Alta Rioja Gran Reserva 890 2004


    Drinking great Read More

    Wine review by jamlani

  • La Rioja Alta 'Alberdi' Tempranillo 2007


    Do not walk run away from this, it is some of the worst Spanish wine I have ever had and is a incredibly horrible value. Read More

    Wine review by johnclough

  • La Rioja Alta Rioja Gran Reserva 890 2004


    No written review

    Wine review by avandoski

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