Rioja is the most famous of all Spanish wine regions. In 1560 Rioja established regulations to ensure the purity of their wines and to prevent other regions from hijacking its “brand.” In 1925, Rioja became Spain’s first, legally recognized Denomination of Origin for wine. When new classifications were introduced in 1991, Rioja was immediately upgraded to DOCa. It is still one of only two in Spain.
Well-made Syrah, almost regardless of style or region, resonates with me. It hits my nose and palate in a way that makes me happy and keeps me interested. I also like that Syrah is an underdog, wine you have to seek out...