01438 741177         thewinesociety.com

Rioja's New Rules


The first that I have seen of all the details of the big shake up In Rioja, quite surprised they got the job done so quickly, the wine world is not known for quick changes, anyway here it all is…

What do you love about The Society's Community?

Interesting, and quite useful for those of us really into it, perhaps more confusing for the general consumer?

Somehow ‘generico’ sounds so much less appealing than ‘joven’, but perhaps that’s the point.


Lots of detail, and PLENTY to confuse the consumer in these rules, but I guess any comprehensive regional rules will have to be.

It is great that they are recognising terroir as a quality designation, not just ageing.

My greatest surprise, in this era of new Privacy regulation and concerns over use of data in society, is the campaign slogan:

Saber Quien Eres

Knowing Who You Are (!!!?)


Better than ‘we know who you are’ I suppose.


Are they referring to last year’s hit amnesia thriller…?

Sé quién eres…


Remarkably sensible rules - got to admire them. Someone correct me… but it seems amazing considering the power of the Big Names, who buy up parcels of wine from all over the place (something to do with balancing the qualities from different altitudes/ terroirs apparently) & market it under a single brand name. And those very expensive brands will now fall into the lowest ‘generico’ category.


Hmm, there’s something wrong here.

It appears that the term ‘genérico’ applies to BOTH young wines that have not been aged AND wines that don’t qualify for Zona or Municipio designations. That can’t be right?

“I’ll have a glass of Rioja Genérico Genérico, please!”


I presume ‘generico’ won’t actually appear on the label. It’ll just say ‘Rioja’.

Update: This does indeed seem to be the case. If you can read Spanish, it’s much clearer in the original www.lomejordelvinoderioja.com/categoria-menciones-20170826002356-ntvo_amp.html


I think Rioja is getting there with these rules. Interesting to see what producers buy into them and how they tier their different wines. Thanks for sharing


Generico will appear on the guarantee seal in the same way that Sin Crianza, Vino Joven have done


I am not sure if I would by a wine that has the word ‘generic’ on the label… especially if I am unfamiliar with the new Rioja rules.


If anyone actually prints ‘genérico’ on a bottle of Rioja, I will buy and eat a Spanish hat.


In that case I’ll make sure that happens :wink:



A friend from Rioja mentioned another issue I had not really considered, and he may have a point.

I am not sure if you noticed, but they are also planning on renaming Rioja Baja as “Rioja Oriental”.

In principle it seems interesting as ‘Baja’ (or Lower) can be seen as pejorative - though it only indicates it is a lower altitude down the valley.

Will the use of the term ‘Oriental’ (spoken as an English word) just raise more issues with consumers? Will it create confusion with Asian provenance? Will this also have some pejorative implications? It is not used that much in the UK (AFAIK) but I gather is used in the US and not in a particularly positive way.

Would it make a difference to you to buy a wine from Rioja Baja or Rioja Oriental?


Orientalism: Western Conceptions of Rioja Oriental, a neo-Saidian analysis… That’s my MW thesis written.