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In This Issue:

Summer Sips

Spotlight on Rioja

Rioja in the News

Consumer Tastings

Consumer Events

Extra Information

Rioja Recipe

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  Summer Sips


Talk To Us:

Do you have a favorite recipe and Rioja wine you’d like us to try? Have a great story about wine or Rioja that you’d like us to print? Or a question you’ve been wanting to ask about food and wine pairing, travel to Spain or other Rioja topics? Talk to us! Send us your ideas, recipes or stories. Simply contact


The Vibrant Rioja Wine Team

Summertime and the livin' is easy … and what goes hand in hand with easy living? Rioja, of course! No matter if you're hosting a party, enjoying a cool summer evening on the patio or firing up the grill, there is a Rioja that fits into your summer routine. Try some of Rioja's whites and rosés for lighter foods and hot summer weather. If you're demonstrating your skills on the grill with heartier fare such as steaks, burgers or lamb, you can bet that there is a robust red from Rioja that won't dominate the flavor of your perfectly prepared meat.

Don't worry -- we practice what we preach over here. We've heeded our own advice and brought out the flip-flops, opened the windows and opened Rioja to ease on into easy summer living. Until next month, salud!

Spotlight on Rioja: 3rd Annual Rioja Grand Tastings Highlighted Tempranillo

For the third time in New York -- and for the first time in San Francisco -- the Vibrant Rioja campaign celebrated the most comprehensive showcase of Rioja wines in the country. Titled “The Heart of Tempranillo,” this year’s Grand Tastings focused on the increasingly popular varietal and king of Rioja wine grapes, Tempranillo. More than 600 wine industry professionals followed the invitation on the East and West Coast and tasted their way through over 300 Rioja wines. Preceding the Grand Tastings were seminars led by wine educator Marnie Old, who discussed Tempranillo and Rioja’s remarkable value and versatility with winemakers Cristina Forner from Marques de Caceres, Diego Pinilla from Bodegas Bilbainas and Rafael Vivanco from Bodegas Dinastía Vivanco. Attendees also enjoyed a special treat: a taste of the newly-introduced Tempranillo Blanco.

And, to add to the list of firsts, for the first time ever, the Vibrant Rioja team opened the New York Grand Tasting doors to consumers in partnership with Snooth, treating more than 230 local wine lovers to a vast Rioja selection, a global food lounge and a DJ.

The New York Grand Tasting was broadcasted live on the web, and over 5,200 people from all over the world tuned in. If you couldn't attend the event, you can watch the seminar and interviews with winemakers and key influencers.
Rioja in the News

Our San Francisco and New York Grand Tasting events were highlighted by wine and culture bloggers across the country. Steve Heimoff, wine blogger and wine editor at Wine Enthusiast magazine remarked, "Yesterday’s big Rioja tasting, sponsored by the Vibrant Rioja U.S. campaign and held on the 38th floor of the St. Francis hotel on a perfectly sunny day, was one of the most information-rich, educational wine seminars I’ve ever attended." Read the full blog post “A Rioja Primer”., a pop culture website, gives you “5 Reasons You Should Be Drinking Wine From Rioja.” Check it out!

Consumer Tastings


Rioja and Tapas Tasting
Ruth's Chris Steak House
1801 Connecticut Ave, NW
Washington, DC 20009
June 9th, 5pm-8pm
For pricing and details please contact (202) 797-0333

In-Store Rioja Tasting (Free)
Whole Foods-P ST
1440 P Street Northwest
Washington, DC 20005
(202) 332-4300
June 10th, 5pm-8pm

In-Store Rioja Tasting (Free)
Tinto Fino
85 1st Ave
New York, NY 10003
(212) 254-0850
June 11th, 4pm-7pm

PJ WINE 9th Annual Spanish Wine Festival to Benefit Action Against Hunger
Metropolitan Pavilion
123 West 18th St
New York, NY 10011
June 17th, 6pm-9:30pm
Purchase tickets

In-Store Rioja Tasting (Free)
Dandelion Wine
153 Franklin St
Brooklyn, NY 11222
(347) 689-4563
June 23th, 6pm-9pm


Consumer Tasting
ABC Fine Wine & Spirits
801 Oviedo Marketplace Blvd
Oviedo, FL 32765
(407) 365-0700
June 1st, 6pm-8pm

Consumer Tasting
1196 Tree Swallow Dr
Winter Springs, FL 32708
(407) 327-2378
June 10th, 6pm-8pm

Consumer Tasting
Sanford Wine Company
114 South Palmetto Ave
Sanford, FL 32771
(407) 302-8620
June 16th, 7pm-9pm


Rioja and Paella Tasting
Lush Wine Spirits
1412 West Chicago Ave
Chicago, IL 60642
(312) 666-6900
June 4th, time TBA

Rioja 101 Tasting (Free)
Potash Brother Market
1525 N Clark St
Chicago, IL 60610
(312) 337-7537
June 10th, 4pm-7pm

Rioja In-Store Tasting (Free)
Ray's Wine & Spirits
8930 W North Ave
Wauwatosa, WI 53226
(414) 258-9821
June 11th, 1pm-4pm

Rioja In-Store Tasting (FREE)
Whole Foods Lincoln Park
1550 N Kingsbury St
Chicago, IL 60642
June 12th, 2pm-5pm

Rioja In-Store Tasting (Free)
Whole Foods Lincoln Park
1550 N Kingsbury St
Chicago, IL 60642
June 19th, 2pm-5pm

El Coto De Paella Parade
Whole Foods Lincoln Park
1550 N Kingsbury St
Chicago, IL 60642
June 23th, 6pm-9pm

Rioja In-Store Tasting (Free)
Potash Brother Market
1525 N Clark St 60610
Chicago, IL
June 24th, 4pm-7pm

Rioja In-Store Tasting (Free)
Ray's Wine & Spirits
8930 W North Ave
Wauwatosa, WI 53226
(414) 258-9821
June 25th, 1pm-4pm

Rioja In-Store Tasting (Free)
Whole Foods Lincoln Park
1550 N Kingsbury St
Chicago, IL 60642
June 26th, 2pm-5pm

Southern California

Rioja Class
Total Wine & More
394 N Moorpark Rd
Thousand Oaks, CA 91360
(805) 494-0108
June 21st, 1pm-3pm

Rioja Class
Total Wine & More
19336 Nordhoff St
Northridge, CA 91324
(818) 700-0130
June 21st, 6:30pm-8:30pm

Consumer Events

June is Rioja Month at B-21 Fine Wine and Spirits
43380 US Highway 19, Tarpon Springs, FL 34688
(727) 937-5049
Check out all of the June Rioja specials, tastings, wine dinner and giveaways. On June 11th, from 1pm-5pm, join Vibrant Rioja’s own Dhane Chesson at the store for a free Rioja and tapas tasting.

Summer Martin, B-21’s Spanish wine buyer, recently traveled to Rioja to experience the wine and region first-hand.

Summer with Rioja at Century Wines
From May 27th through June 26th, Century Wines in Rochester, NY presents “Summer with Rioja.” Throughout the promotion, wine shoppers will receive a free gift with every Rioja purchase. There will also be an in-store tasting event on June 18th. For more information, visit Century Wines.

Spanish Soho Mile
Come join us for a taste of free Rioja wine during the Spanish Mile celebration on June 1st from 6:00pm – 9:00 pm in NYC. The Spanish Mile is Spain’s premier fashion and jewelry event in Soho. For more information, visit The Spain - US Chamber of Commerce.

TAPAS Grand Wine Tasting
The Tempranillo Advocates, Producers and Amigos Society (TAPAS - is hosting the most extensive annual tasting of domestically produced Spanish and Portuguese varietal wines in North America, for the fourth year, in San Francisco. Trade and consumers will have the unique opportunity to sample wines from 40 participating wineries, in a casual walk-around setting.

This year the event will be held at the Fort Mason Herbst Pavilion on Sunday, June 5. The event schedule is as follows:

  • 2:00 - 5:00 p.m. - Consumer Tasting. Tickets are $60 at the door, or $40 in advance at

This year, TAPAS welcomes Chef James Campbell Caruso from La Boca Restaurant, Santa Fe, NM, who will be serving a tapa during the event. La Boca was chosen “Santa Fe’s Best Tapas” by Travel and Leisure, and has been featured on "Giada's Weekend Getaways" on the Food Network. Also enjoy flamenco and classical music by guitarist Jesse Christian Hendricks. The event will include a silent auction benefiting the Greater Bay Area Make-A-Wish Foundation.

Extra Information

El Coto de Rioja Presents the Third Annual Paella Parade in Chicago
For the second year, the El Coto de Rioja Paella Parade, a celebration of Spanish food and culture, brings the Fiesta back to Chicago. Following last year’s successful Paella celebration, ten local chefs and restaurateurs will come together again to compete and showcase Chicago’s top Paella-making skills, vying for the titles of Best Use of Ingredients, Most Creative, Prettiest and the top prize: Paella Parade Pleaser. Guests will indulge in each chef’s unique version of Spain’s most beloved signature dish during the competition while sipping on delicious wines from El Coto de Rioja.

Whole Foods Lincoln Park
1550 N. Kingsbury Street
Chicago, IL 60642
(312) 587-0648
Thursday, June 23
$35 per person / $60 for two
Purchase tickets

Rioja Recipe: Chicken Biryani

This month’s recipe is the 3rd place recipe submission from our Rioja Recipe Contest. Congratulations to Vinaya B. of Rancho Cucamonga, California for the recipe Chicken Biryani! Try it with a Rioja that compliments aromatic spices and sweetness.

Chicken Biryani

2 lbs chicken breast (cut into small pieces; wash, drain and keep aside)
1 medium onion
2” length ginger
6 cloves of garlic
1-2 green chilies
3 stalks coriander (clean and cut onto big pieces)
Directions: Cut onion, ginger, garlic and chilies in small pieces and saute in 2 oz. of oil in medium heat until browned. Then add the chicken and a teaspoon of salt and stir. Cover it and cook watching now and then to make sure that the bottom is not burning. When the chicken is almost done, add coriander leaves. If there is any gravy after it is cooked you can drain it and keep it to add into the water to cook the rice.

2 full cups (coffee mugs) basmati rice
2 pieces of cinnamon sticks (about one and a half finger length)
5 cloves
3 cardamom pods crushed
1 oz. butter
1 oz. oil
1/4 teaspoon saffron powered and mixed in 4 oz. of hot water
1 1/2 teaspoon salt
Directions: Wash the rice; drain and keep ready. Pour the oil in pot and heat at medium. When the oil is hot, add the cinnamon stick and after a minute add the cloves. When the cloves puffs up a little bigger in size, add crushed saffron, rice and butter and fry for ten minutes or so in the same fire. Then add 4 cups of water and the salt. When the rice starts boiling, keep it covered. Check once in a while to make sure that it is not sticking underneath. You can keep the fire low gradually. When it is cooked, remove the dish from the stove. Do not open the dish for 20 minutes. Then mix the chicken with the rice and put in a tray. Cover with the aluminum foil tightly.