Ah, Rioja. Rolling hills, sunkissed vineyards, some of the world’s best wines since way back in Roman times. And home to more “cerrado” signs than you can shake a stick at.
Blame the winter season. Blame siestas. We couldn’t do any wine tasting here to save our lives. We strolled the picturesque little towns with their cobblestone streets and quaint plazas and stunning churches and adorable bodegas. Closed closed closed. Not another soul in sight. It was like the zombie apocalypse of wine tasting.
|Hello? Anybody there?|
|Knock knock! Yoo-hoooo?|
We eventually made our way to an area of condensed wineries that were reputed to be open from 4-7pm. There we were met with a mix of “by appointment only”, “highly overpriced”, and “remarkably rude”. And one guy who nearly drowned us in enthusiastic pours of cold, terrible red wine from a label-free bottle. Finally, we stepped in to Gómez Cruzado and were greeted by a friendly knowledgeable guy and a delicious sample of wines. Just minutes before the town came to a close, along with our time in Rioja.
At least the view from our airbnb was stunning.