Wines of Rioja is launching two new initiatives to promote the region's wines in the UK on-trade, including a 100-strong list of some of Rioja's best wines.
Dubbed Rioja 10 by 10, the list comprises of 100 wines over 10 categories, tasted by a panel of UK wine industry experts, and selected to 'demonstrate both excellence and diversity' within the region.
The 10 categories are:
1. Unoaked whites
2. Oaked whites
4. Unusual wines
5. Generic wines over £15
8. Gran Reserva
9. Wineries seeking representation
10. Red made from non-Tempranillo varieties.
Ricardo Aguiriano, marketing director for the Consejo Regulado, the body in charge of the Rioja classification system, comments: 'Rioja 10 by 10 is a new way of exploring the quality and diversity Rioja has to offer, and will allow the wines to really speak for themselves. The UK is a very important market for us, even more so after the spectacular growth we have experienced in the country over recent years, so we’re delighted to be launching these two new initiatives.'
The list will be unveiled at a trade tasting of the 100 wines on 10 November, and followed by Rioja Recognises, an awards ceremony recognising supporters of the region in the UK on-trade.
This comes as Rioja confirms its position as a strong player in the UK wine trade, with value growth of 9.9% in the year 2014. Valued at £220m, Rioja accounted for 4% of the UK's total wine market in 2014.
Rioja 10 by 10 will take place biennially, alternating with the larger Rioja Grand Tasting.