BBC Good Food Magazine
The classic taste of tempranillo is strawberry, but in hotter climates, such as Toro in Spain, you’ll get darker fruit like blackcurrants. At altitude, such as Rioja Alta, you’ll get more floral aromas like violets, and with tones of aged spices, like cinnamon.
Tempranillo has a natural affinity with oak. Traditional Rioja is aged in American oak, lending notes of vanilla, coconut and tobacco. French oak is also used, bringing spices like cloves and liquorice.
The best tempranillo-based wines from Rioja or Ribera del Duero can last for decades, but the grape can also be used to make deliciously vibrant light wines designed for early drinking.
Light tempranillo wines can be served cool at 12C, whereas sturdier examples should be served at 16-18C.