Welcome to Spain. No one else makes good Tempranillo and frankly no one else even bothers to try. As you might expect with anything coming from Spain, the grape grows best in extremely warm conditions.

Interestingly, Tempranillo is not the full bodied red that you might expect. In fact it is more medium bodied red that has a flavor profile more similar to Pinot Noir then any other varietal, it literally is busting with cherry when the wine is young.

Really, really good Tempranillo is allowed to age for at least two years in American oak barrels. This aging process allows the wine to mellow even further and it takes on a vanilla flavor that is more similar to oak driven Chardonnay.

Finding a great Tempranillo is fairly easy, find your way to Rioja and enjoy the visit.