Vineyards in La Rioja. Fernando Briones/©ICEX.
La Rioja is a region consisting of a single province located in the north of Spain. It has an area of 5,045.25 sq. kilometers / 1,948 sq miles. Its capital city is Logroño.
Rioja wine is one of the most famous wines produced in Spain. Using the Tempranillo red wine grape as a base, and taking small and wisely-studied proportions of Garnacha, Mazuelo and Graciano and other grape varieties, the wineries of this region produce Rioja young wines, crianzas (aged for at least twelve months in oak barrels and another twelve months in bottles), reservas (aged at least a year in barrels and another two years in bottles) and gran reservas (aged in oak barrels for at least two years, and another three years in bottles).
The grape varieties that are currently authorised by the Regulations of the DOCa Rioja are Tempranillo, Garnacha, Graciano, Mazuelo and Maturana Tinta (red) and Viura, Malvasía, Garnacha Blanca, Tempranillo Blanco, Turruntés, Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc and Verdejo (white grapes).