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Tempranillo

Notoriously food-friendly with soft tannins, modest alcohol, and bright acidity...

Notoriously food-friendly with soft tannins, modest alcohol, and bright acidity, Tempranillo is the star of Spain’s Rioja and Ribera del Duero regions. It is important throughout Spain as well as in Portugal, where it is known as Tinta Roriz and is an important component of Port wines and the table wines of the Douro region that Port calls home. California, Washington, and Oregon have all had moderate success with Tempranillo, producing a riper, more fruit-forward style of wine.

In the Glass

Tempranillo is often aged in new oak for the integration of spicy, woodsy, and herbal flavors, often with hints of vanilla, coconut, and dill. The grape itself produces medium-weight reds with bright red and black fruit aromas and hints of spice, leather, and tobacco, with no shortage of flavor.

Perfect Pairings

Tempranillo’s modest, fine-grained tannins and bright acidity make it extremely food friendly, pairing with a wide variety of Spanish-inspired dishes—especially grilled lamb chops, a rich chorizo and bean stew, or paella.

Sommelier Secret

The Spanish take their oak aging requirements very seriously, especially in Rioja. There, a system is in place to indicate on the label how much time the wine has spent in both barrel and bottle before release, which is helpful to the consumer trying to determine the style of an unfamiliar wine. Rioja can range from Joven (fresh, fruity, and unoaked) to Gran Reserva (complex and oxidized from extended barrel aging), with Crianza and Reserva in between.

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14 Items
  • Vina Herminia Crianza 2014
    Tempranillo from Rioja, Spain
    • WW90
    3.8 5 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $13.99
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    16
    13 99
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  • Marques de Riscal Rioja Reserva 2011
    Tempranillo from Rioja, Spain
    • JS92
    • WW91
    4.2 50 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $17.99
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    20
    17 99
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  • Campo Viejo Gran Reserva 2011
    Tempranillo from Rioja, Spain
    • WW91
    4.0 4 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $21.99
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    24
    21 99
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  • Verdad Sawyer Lindquist Vineyard Tempranillo 2014
    Tempranillo from Edna Valley, Central Coast, California
    • TP91
    • WE90
    • WW90
    4.1 4 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $27.99
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    30
    27 99
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  • Vetus 2011
    Tempranillo from Toro, Spain
    • RP90
    • WW90
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $27.99
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    30
    27 99
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  • Marques de Riscal Rioja Gran Reserva 2005
    Tempranillo from Rioja, Spain
    • WE93
    • WW92
    4.0 12 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $52.99
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    52 99
    52 99
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  • Hermanos Pecina Finca Iscorta de Pecina Gran Reserva 2010
    Tempranillo from Rioja, Spain
    • WW92
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $48.99
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    48 99
    48 99
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  • Bodegas Ramon Bilbao Gran Reserva 2009
    Tempranillo from Rioja, Spain
    • WW90
    4.0 4 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $32.99
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    32 99
    32 99
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  • Torres Celeste Crianza 2014
    Tempranillo from Ribera del Duero, Spain
    • WW89
    3.9 5 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $19.99
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    19 99
    19 99
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  • Campo Viejo Tempranillo 2015
    Tempranillo from Rioja, Spain
    • WW88
    3.3 21 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $11.99
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    11 99
    11 99
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  • Martian Gravitas Tempranillo 2014
    Tempranillo from Santa Barbara, Central Coast, California
    • WW90
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $36.99
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    36 99
    36 99
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  • Dominio de Pingus Psi 2015
    Tempranillo from Ribera del Duero, Spain
    • JS94
    • WW92
    4.4 9 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $33.99
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    33 99
    33 99
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  • Verdad Rock n Rojo Tempranillo 2014
    Tempranillo from Central Coast, California
    • WW89
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $18.99
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    18 99
    18 99
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  • The Fableist Tempranillo 2014
    Tempranillo from Paso Robles, Central Coast, California
    • WW89
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $20.99
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    20 99
    20 99
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