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Rioja 10 x 10

This autumn Wines from Rioja will once again reveal its 10 x 10; a line-up of some of the region’s most outstanding wines, blind tasted and selected by a panel of leading experts. The 10x10, launched in 2015, offers a snapshot of Rioja’s quality and diversity, showcasing the 10 best wines in 10 different styles, and aims to present the UK wine trade with examples of the most exciting wines currently on offer from the region.

This year all Rioja producers, with or without a UK importer, were invited to submit wines which they felt represented the best example of Rioja in that particular category. All entries were blind tasted by an expert panel chaired by Tim Atkin MW and Sarah Jane Evans MW, which included representatives from across the wine trade. Wines were split into 10 categories, selected to represent the broad spectrum of wines the Rioja region produces –and from the hundreds of entries, judges were tasked with identifying the top 10 wines in each of the following categories:

Unoaked whites
Oaked whites
Reserva 2009 and earlier
Reserva 2010 and later
Grandes Reservas
Reds made from non-Tempranillo varietals
Generic Wines over £15

The tenth category this year was a Chairs’ Choice category, created to celebrate truly outstanding wines and allow Tim Atkin MW and Sarah Jane Evans MW to pick their personal favourites from the tasting.

The final list of chosen wines will be unveiled to members of the UK trade at the Wines from Rioja 10x10 tasting which takes place on Tuesday October 11th at Banking Hall, London. Visitors will be invited to discover the diversity of the region which according to Chair judge Sarah Jane Evans MW ‘is what Rioja is all about’, with a line-up of wines spanning reds made solely from Maturana, to a 1996 Gran Reserva and even a 100% Mazuelo Rosado. Quality will also be a key focus, with Tim Atkin MW commenting that ‘the tasting demonstrated that Spain’s largest fine wine region is making better wines than ever’.

2016 has proved another successful year for Rioja, which continues to post positive growth in the UK market, despite increasingly challenging European trading conditions and an overall decline in the UK wine sector. While Rioja sales by volume continued their positive trajectory over the last 12 months, it’s Rioja’s value figures which really reinforce its position as Spain’s flagship wine region, with the average price per bottle of Rioja in the UK coming in at 28% higher than the rest of the Spanish category, and growing its share of value in the Spanish category to 48% (vs 37%1 in terms of volume).

Ricardo Aguiriano, Marketing Director for the Consejo Regulador DOCa Rioja comments: “The Rioja 10 by 10 concept allows us to present the best Rioja wines, as judged by the expert panel, in a way which is both accessible and commercially relevant for members of the UK trade. The UK remains a key market for us and leads the way in embracing new styles emerging from the region whilst remaining loyal to the region’s traditional offering. The Rioja market here continues to grow and diversify and the 10x10 tasting reflects the evolving tastes of the UK market.”

Rioja 10 by 10 will be followed later in the autumn by the Rioja Recognises event which will see Wines from Rioja celebrate trailblazing and dedicated Rioja supporters who have shown ongoing commitment to the region. A sommelier trip to the region, along with Shop Rioja – a UK-wide promotion working with over 100 retail outlets, and a through-the-line campaign with Waitrose are all to come this year as part of the yearlong campaign to support premiumisation in the category, and drive trial of the lesser known styles of Rioja.

Open to members of the UK trade only, Rioja 10 by 10 will take place on 11th October at a Hispania, London) from 11am-6pm – registration will be open from 5th September at

For more information or to register your interest in attending the tasting please contact Wines from Rioja at Phipps on 0207 759 7400 or email

Notes to Editors
- Rioja Recognises is invitation only
- Wines from Rioja is the UK marketing arm of The Rioja Regulatory Council or Consejo Regulador de Rioja DOCa, the body responsible for the application and monitoring of legislation relating to the quality and standards of wines produced in the region, promotion of the image of Rioja wines and defence of interests of the sector
- Carpe Vinum, a report published by Wine Intelligence in 2015, showed that Rioja is second only
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- Data source: Nielsen MAT to 18/06/16