Close Menu

Why you should attend the Rioja Residency next week

Next week sees the first Rioja Residency take place in the UK, celebrating the region’s wines. db caught up with Rioja DOCa’s global marketing & communications director Inigo Tapiador on what the event has to offer.

Does the Vino de Autor category in Rioja need pinning down?

Rioja DOCa global marketing & communications director Inigo Tapiador, said the new look event, due to take place on Wednesday, 21 June, in London would aim to “inspire and educate” the trade on the region – and establish Rioja’s credentials.

“Rioja Residency will be a fully immersive day of Rioja wine hosted at a luxury hotel in Central London, The Ned,” Tapiador said, “aimed at inspiring and educating key members of the trade and establishing Rioja as a super-premium, ‘must-list’ fine wine.

“The Rioja Residency is all about celebrating Rioja, bringing top members of the UK trade and press together under one beautiful roof to explore, learn and enjoy all things Rioja. This is a new look event that will deliver long-term impact with the aim of increasing the value of Rioja across the board.


Tapiador also highlighted how the masterclasses will play a critical role in the promotion of Rioja at the event.

He said: “What better way to bring Rioja wines to life that to partner with some of Rioja’s most knowledgeable storytellers! So this year we will be working with Sarah Jane Evans MW who will be hosting a discussion on the ‘must list’ Rioja wines right now, with five winemakers from Rioja.

“We will also be hosting a seminar with Pedro Ballesteros Torres MW, he will guide the trade and press through his ‘Secrets of the Cellar’ tasting through spectacular wines from three his favourite Rioja producers.

“And finally, aimed at the on-trade, there will be a food and wine pairing workshop hosted by top sommelier Gonzalo Rodriguez Diaz who will be taking guests outside of their pairing comfort zone matching Rioja wines to dishes curated by The Ned.”

For those eager to find out exactly what will feature, Tapiador said that “more will be revealed on the winemakers and wines involved at the seminars” when guests attend the event.

All corners of the UK trade

The event will also have something covered for all parts of the UK trade, something Inigo Tapiador was keen to stress.

He continued: “We wanted to ensure that there was something relevant to all corners of the UK trade from indies to retailers, sommeliers and press. So hosting a useful guide to which Rioja wines should feature on wine lists with Sarah Jane Evans will be useful for those looking to go explore wider Rioja varieties and styles.

“Then, for those looking for a little education on ageing Rioja, and looking retrospectively at the region’s rich heritage, Pedro Ballasteros will guide them through some spectacular vintages. Then, of course, for the sommeliers in the crowd, some useful top tips on how to think creatively about pairing Rioja to food will be presented.

“The UK on and off trade with buying power as well as press and key trade representatives looking to further their Rioja knowledge, discover new wines and hopefully take on new listings!”


A number of the DOCa’s winemakers are due to attend the event, ensuring that all bases are covered across Rioja.

“On the day, there will be a walk around tasting featuring 20 winemakers, all laid out in their geographical sub-zones,” Tapiador continued, “so it is an easy way to tour Rioja’s 100km of diversity.”

“In addition to this, there will be three seminars held as well as an educator ‘walk around’ tour, hosted by Rioja wine educator, Leona Da Pasquale, who will provide a guided tour of the tasting for visiting educators.

“Lunch will also be provided for guests, and there will be a brilliant opportunity to network at the end of the day on The Ned’s sixth floor terrace, which overlooks the city – accompanied by live music, canapes and Rioja Espumoso.”

Event details

Rioja Residency at The Ned

Wednesday, 21 June, 11AM-PM

Sixth Floor, The Ned

27 Poultry, London EC2R 8AJ

Masterclass timings

  • 11am: The Ten Heroes of Rioja, with Sarah Jane Evans MW
  • 2pm: Secrets of the Cellar, with Pedro Ballesteros Torres MW
  • 2pm: Match made in Rioja, with Gonzalo Rodriguez Diaz

It looks like you're in Asia, would you like to be redirected to the Drinks Business Asia edition?

Yes, take me to the Asia edition No