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Rioja

Rioja is a wine from a region named after the Rio Oja, in northeast Spain. Rioja wines are normally a blend of various grape varieties, and can be either red, white or rose. In whites, the wines are made from viura and verdejo, while in reds, the best-known and most widely-used variety is Tempranillo, blended with garnacha (grenache), graciano, mazuelo and others. Red Riojas often display characteristics of oak and vanilla, due to barrel aging with relatively high proportions of new oak. Red riojas come in various styles, defined according to the length of time spent in barrel, from joven (young) styles to Crianza, Reserva and Gran Reserva.