One step ahead of Rioja to give greater prominence to the specific provenance of wines made in the DO. Since August 2017, the differentiation of the wines of Rioja is normalized into three categories (vino singular, vino de municipio and vino de zona), that must be added to a fourth one that is the generic Rioja of all the life. In this way, the Consejo Regulador adapts to the market trends, which ask that the wines can be valued according to the singularity of their origin.
It is the category ‘top’, the highest quality in Rioja. They are vineyards of at least 35 years and a maximum yield of 5.000kg per hectare for red grapes and 6,922 for white (77% on the normal yield of 100%) and 65% in transformation in cellar (70% usual). To obtain this differentiation, ownership of the vineyards or stable lease contracts is required for at least ten years, manual harvesting and processing and breeding carried out separately. In turn, the bottles will have numbering and specific strap and the wines will undergo a double qualification, initial and before leaving the market, with a required tasting valuation of ‘Excellent’. It also requires at least three years of traceability. In this way, the first wines of ‘singular vineyard’ will arrive with the harvest of 2019.
VINO DE PUEBLO / MUNICIPIO
To obtain this qualification, at least 85% of the grapes must come from the locality to which reference is made or be from neighboring municipalities. There is no limitation of yields and it is required that the winery is located in the municipality. At least 142 municipalities in Rioja are likely to carry this indication.
VINO DE ZONA
The traditional subzones are now called zones. They are the well-known Rioja Alta, Rioja Oriental -before Rioja Baja- and Rioja Alavesa. 85% of the grapes must come from the region to which reference is made and the rest of neighboring municipalities. There are no performance limitations. The winery is required to be located in the area.