International Tempranillo Day - 11/12/2020
Tempranillo has to be one of the most delightful wines on the planet! Fruity, fresh, and bright with well-balanced acidity, it is a perfect bottle for entry level and more experienced wine drinkers alike.
A predominant varietal in the Rioja region of Spain, Tempranillo does find its way throughout that country and into Portugal. Just as the four aging classifications (Tinto/Rioja, Crianza, Reserva, & Gran Reserva) affect the flavor profiles, the climate in each of its regions changes the mouth feel and the tannic structure of this Noble Grape.
Younger Tempranillo will maintain the lively, cherry fruit profile already mentioned. But, as you get into the Reserva's and Gran Reserva's that have at least 3 years total in the barrel and bottle, and well over 5 for the top classification, the aging develops the earth and leather notes that are prevalent in Tempranillo. More tannic structure makes the Gran Reserva wines extremely age worthy.
When in Rioja last year, I drank Tempranillo every day and found that it pairs perfectly with beef, lamb (with roasted vegetables), and Serrano and Iberico ham. It's also a wine that pairs well with hearty pasta dishes.
Spanish wines, I think, offer some of the best values in the wine world. Easy to drink, with or without food, the bottles coming out of the Iberian Peninsula surprise me with a complexity and quality that surpasses many higher-priced domestic wines.
At Buy-Rite we celebrate this beautiful grape with a highly-rated selection of Tempranillo blends and Rioja's.
In honor of International Tempranillo Day, throw together a quick antipasto platter and do a Rioja tasting. Compare at least two of the four classifications and experience how aging changes the flavor profiles in wine, all while enjoying Tempranillo's delicious zippy style!