Tempranillo is Spain's "noble" grape variety probably best known for it's presence in the fantastic Rioja wines of Spain though is also used widely in producing port in Spain and Portugal. As the variety is known to ripen well ahead of other spanish grown varieties it takes it's name from the Spanish word temprano meaning early. It has many other names across Catalonia, La Mancha and Portugal and is now grown widely elsewhere too, notably in Australia.
Rioja and tempranillo based wines in general vary from elegance to "beefyness" dependant on the coolness or warmth in the growing region in which they are cultivated. At their best they possess a unique balance of acidity and tannins with just the right amount of spiceness. Great on their own or with hearty Spanish style dishes like pork and black bean stew or roasted meats like lamb as well as sausages.
Cheaper Tempranillo wines are bottled young whereas at the other end of the price scale they are aged in oak barrels for several years. Oak barrels and tempranillo have a long and succesful relationship with the vanilla flavour imparted works beatifully with the grape juice. We are now seeing the use of both new and older oak barrels in rioja productions which has served to increase the flavour and complexity of many of the new tempranillo wines offered to us. This can only be a good thing.
Soft, round black fruit flavours with an edge of Iberian spice. Bodegas Antano, a modern, well equipped winery in Rueda, source grapes from within and outside the DO and bring to bear their wine-making skills.
Cariñena is the largest of the four DO zones in the Aragón region. Traditionally most of the hefty reds were sold in bulk for blending but like many regions they are now looking to break with the past. Progressive private bodegas are no...
The domed hill of Vega Sindoa lies south of Pamplona and wine influences in this part of the Basque region are both French and Spanish: you're as likely to find Merlot here as Tempranillo. Having identified the site as rich in wine potential, tal...
Real Compañía de Vinos was established in 2007 by Bodegas Muriel, as a project focusing on producing single-varietal wines from both Spanish and international grape varieties. This Tempranillo comes from 30-70-year-old vineyards in Manc...
I always remember that the late great John Peel loved Rioja so lets dedicate these pages to his memory. It's worth mentioning too that these pages are from our grape variety category. If you are specifically after Rioja you can simply type it into the search box on the top right of the page or click here and browse 144 Rioja wines instead.
We have over 50 to choose from here and again bearing in mind that these wines become more expensive with age, you might find our price range selector useful when making your selection.
In terms of flavour and aroma with Tempranillo spanish wines you can expect wines that are ruby red in colour, with scents and flavors of berries, plum, tobacco, vanilla, leather and herb dependant on age.
The variety although most associated with Spain is now enjoying popularity amongst growers in Argentina, Australia, Chile and even Thailand.