Tópicos absurdos. Rioja o Ribera (1)

Absurd Trends (I): RIOJA OR RIBERA?

As in any field of life, in the world of wine there are a lot of absurd topics. Maybe it’s just the bad habit that society has of questioning the opinions of our peers to assert their own, although, in this case, I attribute it to a lack of perspective and, above all, knowledge. I am going to give a series of examples in which many people can see themselves reflected and with which, perhaps, they will understand what I want to express.

In this entry, I will start with one of the most hackneyed clichés: “I am more from Rioja than from Ribera” or vice versa. A statement like this is meaningless. Generalizing is always unfair, in addition to the fact that it implies having a very important notion about Rioja and Ribera del Duero wines, something that is not common in the general public. Rioja has two ways of making wine, one classic and the other modern. Within each one there are different wineries with different peculiarities and not necessarily because of this, some are better than others, just different and in both cases they can produce exceptional wines. In addition, we can add that in Rioja there are three zones and also multiple varieties, red and white. Likewise, these same arguments are applicable to Ribera del Duero, without forgetting that it covers Valladolid, Burgos and Soria.

With all this I want to say that the cliché “I am more from Rioja than from Ribera” or vice versa, implies a lot of variables that make the statement a really absurd cliché. If we did a blind tasting of Rioja wines compared to others from Ribera, most of those who make such a statement would have serious problems distinguishing them because, with similar methods of production, there are Rioja and Ribera del Duero wines that have many points in common, something logical because tempranillo -called fine tinta or tinta del país in Ribera del Duero- is the predominant grape in both wine regions.

Even generalizing, particularly, it would be difficult for me to say if I like Rioja or Ribera wines more. It is just as difficult for me to lean towards classic Rioja wines as opposed to modern ones, because in both forms of production there are authentic wonders. After this brief analysis, are you still more from Rioja than Ribera del Duero or vice versa?

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