Wednesday, October 19, 2022 - 07:30 PM

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"With bread and wine you can walk your road"

Spanish Proverb quotes




I will never forget my first trip to Spain in 1994.  The Spanish government had a program where they gave wine industry professionals an opportunity to win an all expenses paid trip to visit several of the major wine producing regions in Spain for FREE.  All you had to do was take a test and be one of the two highest scoring individuals in your market and your on your way to Spain business class airfair, all accomodations and meals were courtesy of the Spanish wine industry.


The leader of our group of industry leaders was non other than Ana Fabiano, who at that time was considered one of the foremost experts on Spanish wines living in the United States.  She was a wealth of knowledge and the trip was a "Once in a Lifetime" opprotunity to learn about Spanish wines visiting some of Spain's top wineries in VIP fashion.  I remember every winery we visited rolled out the red xcarpet and we finished our lunches with Spanish brandy and Cuban cigars. 


So when my good friend Florent Blanchet from Twenty One Wines contacted me to let me know Ana was in town promoting the wines of Rioja I was happy to offer to host this event at the Wine Bar. 


Join us as we welcome Ana back to South Flroida for a special evening of Rioja wines from two great wineries Bodegas Ontañón and Bodegas Queirón along with a special meal prepared by Chef Toni Lampasone.  The fee for this tasting which includes dinner is $195 + tax, for reservations call 954-523-9463 or e-mail




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Wednesday, October 19, 2022

7:30 PM


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2021 Bodegas Ontañón, Rioja Clarete Rosado

Price: $17.25                       Sale $15.18


The Clarete displays a clean, bright, and almost transparent coral color. In nose, it expresses a pure, red fruit component laced with light floral aromas. It is light, crisp, and fresh in the mouth, with striking acidity and lifted floral aromas, balanced by delicate red fruit.


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2021 Bodegas Ontañón Rioja Tempranillo Blanco Edición Limitada

Price: $18.75       Sale $16.50


Intense tropical fruit aromas of pineapple and banana with hints of white flowers.

On the palate, this wine is balanced with good acidity, a high expression of fruit with a lengthy finish.


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2018 Bodegas Ontañón Rioja Viura

Price: $18.75           Sale $16.50


2017 Bodegas Ontañón Rioja Viura

Price: $18.75           Sale $16.50


On the nose, there are intense aromas of ripe fruits, with an emphasis on pear, tropical fruit, and citrus notes. They are all tied together with a touch of spice from its time in barrel. On the palate, the wine is well balanced with bright with well integrated acidity. Notes of citrus, tropical fruits, and a slight honeyed quality result in a complez and refreshing finish. Pairs well with fresh seafood, garden vegetables, and poultry.


Bodegas Ontanon Akemi Viura, Rioja DOCa, Spain 2018


2018 Bodegas Ontañón Rioja Viura Akemi

Price: $21.50           Sale $18.92


It's 100% Viura with 5 months in oak, and shows intense aromas of starfruit, white peach that carry through to a creamy palate where notes of lime and spice emerge. Nicely cut, but not hard, and finishing with complex, juicy, fruit and a touch of salty minerality. Don't limit it to raw fish! This has more than enough interest to just sip or enjoy with any lighter fare.


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2018 Bodegas Ontañón Rioja Crianza

Price: $20.25           Sale $17.82


Bodegas Ontanon Crianza is a rich ruby hue in color, with flecks of purple. On the nose, the wine exhibits intense aromas of black fruits, spice, and balsamic vinegar. The wine is fleshy on the palate, with balanced acidity and notes of black fruit and wood.


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2010 Bodegas Ontañón Rioja Gran Reserva

Price: $49.50           Sale $43.56


Gran Reservas by DOCa regulation must spend a total of five years in the winery (three in barrel and two in bottle) prior to release, and this aging lends a quality of subtle spice and integrated components of tobacco and dried fruit. The wine displays notes of soft, voluptuous dark fruit with a touch of earth and a lifted floral aroma on the nose.

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2015 Bodegas Ontañón Rioja Reserva

Price: $30.00           Sale $26.50


This wine is cherry red in color. The nose and palate are highly com- plex with notes of compote fruit punctuated by toasted spice notes and minerals from aging in high quality oak. The elegance found on the palate is the result of balanced acidity, astringency, and aromatic power, which contributes to a long and elegant finish.


2011 Bodegas Ontañón Rioja Reserva

Price: $63.75           Sale $56.10


Reservas are produced only in vintages of exceptional quality, and the Ontañon Reserva comes from our most select vineyards on the slopes of the Sierra Yerga Mountains, just above the town of Quel in Rioja baja. The product of some of their oldest vines, Ontañon Reserva displays notes of deep, full fruit flavors but with ample acidity, minerality and earth notes drawn from the land where the fruit is grown. It has backbone, fine-laced acidity, structure and natural grape tannins that that will ensure its integrity for years to come.


Bodegas Ontanon 'Marco Fabio' Vendimia Tardia, Spain, NV 500ml


NV Bodegas Ontañón Marco Fabio Vendimia Tardia

Price: $24.75           Sale $21.78


Light and smooth wine as well as fragrant and elegant. Made with grapes of the Moscatel de Grano Menudo variety that have been allowed to overripe in the vineyards, carrying out late harvests to obtain natural residual sugars that provide deep aromas of the Muscatel variety.




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2019 Queirón Rioja Tempranillo Blanco Ensayos Capitales No. 2

Price: $54.00           Sale $47.52


Only 2,000 bottles were produced from this single vineyard with an area of ​​0.89 ha. The family decided to sell this wine only in Spain, the USA, Switzerland, Belgium and Poland, leaving 50% for Spain in the first year and the remaining 50% for the other countries mentioned.


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2018 Queirón Rioja Vino De Quel Mi Lugar

Price: $45.00           Sale $39.60


Mi Lugar de Queirón springs from a selection of small Tempranillo and Grenache finquitas that slowly ascend the slopes of the Sierra de Yerga in a collection of heights, exhibitions and floors that collect the essence of tradition and the historical soul of Quel wines. The climate and soil conditions are exceptional. All the plots are small tablets with low yields, located at heights above 600 meters above sea level, grown in glass and harvested by hand. We are excited by My Place because it is like a diary, a log and a trip through several vineyards of Quel, each of them peculiar and unique: Grenache at six hundred meters and early seven hundred. Each vineyard with its soil, its orientation, its character. Mi Lugar is a wonderful Almazuela de Quel. We love this wine because it reflects the soul of our people and Queirón is Quel, Queirón is Rioja.


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2011 Queirón Rioja Reserva Viñedos Familiares

Price: $52.50           Sale $46.20


The grapes with which Queirón Reserva is made are subjected to a double selection: vineyard and bunch. Then the selected grape performs a pre-fermentative maceration for 5 days. Alcoholic fermentation takes place in stainless steel tanks at a controlled temperature. Malolactic fermentation lasts up to 18 days.


This wine is aged for 24 months in barrels, 70% French oak and 30% American oak. Then it rests 36 more bottles at temperature and natural humidity of the underground of the winery.


Queirón Reserve Viñedos Familiares is a red wine of an intense cherry red color with ruby-tile tones on the edge. It has intense aromas of spicy notes, coffee and fig, with light touches of black fruits and undergrowth. It has a slight balsamic and mineral background.





Pata Negra Jamon Cinco Jotas

Torta Espanola

Patatas A La Riojana

Lamb and Eggplant Moussaka

Tarta De Queso


The fee for this tasting which includes dinner is $195 + tax, for reservations call 954-523-9463 or e-mail




About Ana Fabiano



Building upon her 30 years of expertise in the Rioja wine industry, Ana Fabiano is passionate about a healthy, holistic approach to living, which is prevalent in Rioja. Her holistic approach encompasses bringing the culture, heritage, and tradition of the Rioja wine region into lives to experience from anywhere.


Ana's intention is to share an authentic wine place of origin, allow people anywhere to experience the genuine wines, and introduce others to traditions inculcated in the people, land, and products of Rioja.



Ana has written the most comprehensive book about Rioja to date, having earned a Mastery Certification in the Castilian language, a credential that allowed her to research and write the award winning book, The Wine Region of Rioja. Fabiano is acknowledged for her exhaustive research for her book and noted as a scholar on the Rioja region.


Ana Fabiano was founder of Rioja Trade, Rioja's North American trade entity for professionals in the wine industry,  and led the trailblazing USA Trade team for the Rioja Regulatory Control Board for over a decade in the capacity of the North American Trade Director and Brand Ambassador for the DOCa Rioja, which translates into the Denomination of Origin Qualified - the highest quality control standards, achieved in 1991.


In 2015, Ana successfully opened the Canadian market for the Rioja wine board campaign. In both markets, sales across various stakeholders were increased as well as value shipments. She was the first American hired by the Embassy of Spain's Commercial Office and became one of the three founders of Wines from Spain. For over 25 years she has passionately researched and traveled extensively through the wine country of Spain with great professional concentration in Rioja.


Fabiano has dedicated her professional life and vast research to the wine and food industry of Spain. Her highly respected work and milestone achievements for Rioja have equipped her with mastery in her subject matter as well as the marketplace. She is recognized and respected as a Rioja expert inside and outside the DOCa of Rioja.


Her passions include her 4 heroic children, FDNY fiancé, Rioja, her garden, and mentorship.




Rioja –The most famous Spanish Wine




The harvesting of wine in La Rioja has an ancient lineage with origins dating back to the Phoenicians and the Celtiberians. The earliest written evidence of the existence of the grape in La Rioja dates to 873, in the form of a document from the Public Notary of San Millán dealing with a donation to the San Andrés de Trepeana (Treviana) Monastery. As was the case in many Mediterranean lands in mediaeval times, monks were the main practitioners of winemaking in La Rioja and great advocates of its virtues. In the thirteenth century, Gonzalo de Berceo, clergyman of the Suso Monastery in San Millán de la Cogolla (La Rioja) and Spain's earliest known poet, mentions the wine in some of his works.


In the year 1063, the first testimony of viticulture in La Rioja appears in the "Carta de población de Longares" (Letter to the Settlers of Longares). The King of Navarra and Aragon gave the first legal recognition of Rioja wine in 1102. Vineyards occupied the usual part of rural landscapes in medieval Rioja during the High Middle Ages (10th-13th century)  There are proofs of Rioja wine export towards other regions as early as the late 13th century, which testifies the beginnings of a commercial production. From the 15th century on, the Rioja Alta specialized in wine growing. In 1560, harvesters from Longares chose a symbol to represent the quality of the wines. In 1635, the mayor of Logroño prohibited the passing of carts through streets near wine cellars, in case the vibrations caused a deterioration of the quality of the wine. Several years later, in 1650, the first document to protect the quality of Rioja wines was drawn up. In 1790, at the inaugural meeting of the Real Sociedad Económica de Cosecheros de La Rioja (Royal Economic Society of Rioja Winegrowers), many initiatives as to how to construct, fix, and maintain the roads and other forms of access for transportation of wine were discussed. The Society was established to promote the cultivation and commercialisation of Rioja wines and 52 Rioja localities participated.


In 1852, Luciano Murrieta created the first fine wine of the Duque de la Victoria area, having learned the process in Bordeaux. In 1892, the Viticulture and Enology Station of Haro was founded for quality-control purposes. In 1902, a Royal Decree determining the origin of Rioja wines is promulgated. The Consejo Regulador (Regulating Council) was created in 1926 with the objective of limiting the zones of production, expanding the warranty of the wine and controlling the use of the name "Rioja". This Council became legally structured in 1945 and was finally inaugurated in 1953. In 1970 the Regulations for Denominación de Origen were approved as well as Regulations for the Regulating Council. In 1991, the prestigious "Calificada" (Qualified) nomination was awarded to La Rioja, making it Spain's first Denominación de Origen Calificada (DOCa).

Limits of the Rioja D.O.C.


In 2008, the Regulatory Council for the La Rioja Denomination of Origin created a new logo to go on all bottles of wine produced under this designation. From now on bottles of wine from the La Rioja Qualified Denomination of Origin will no longer bear the familiar logo. In an attempt to appeal to younger wine-lovers, the long-standing logo will now be replaced with a brighter, more modern logo with cleaner lines. The aim is to reflect the new, modern aspects of wine-growing in La Rioja without detracting from the traditional wines. In theory, the new logo represents a Tempranillo vine symbolising "heritage, creativity and dynamism". Consumers should start seeing the labels in October 2008. The Joven from 2008, Crianza from 2006, Reserva from 2005, and Gran Reserva from 2003 being released this year should bear the new label, in theory.


Located south of the Cantabrian Mountains along the Ebro river, La Rioja benefits from a continental climate. The mountains help to isolate the region which has a moderating effect on the climate. They also protect the vineyards from the fierce winds that are typical of northern Spain. The region is also home to the Oja river (Rio Oja), believed to have given the region its name. Most of the region is situated on a plateau, a little more than 1,500 feet (460 m) above sea level. The area is subdivided into three regions - Rioja Alavesa, Rioja Alta and Rioja Baja. La Rioja Alavesa and la Rioja Alta, located closer to the mountains, are at slightly higher elevations and have a cooler climate. La Rioja Baja to the southeast is drier and warmer. Annual rainfall in the region ranges from 12 inches (300 mm) in parts of Baja to more than 20 inches (510 mm) in La Rioja Alta and Alavesa. Many of Rioja's vineyards are found along the Ebro valley between the towns of Haro and Alfaro.




Wine regions

A wine from the Rioja Alavesa region.


The three principal regions of La Rioja are Rioja Alavesa, Rioja Alta and Rioja Baja with each area producing its own unique expression of Rioja wine. Most of the territory subjected to the Rioja Protected designation of origin is in the La Rioja region, even though their limits do not coincide exactly. There is a narrow strip in the left bank of the Ebro river lying in the southernmost part of Álava included in the La Rioja wine region, whereas the south-southwestern part of the La Rioja region is not a part of this Protected designation of origin.




Rioja Alta


Located on the western edge of the region and at higher elevations than the other areas, the Rioja Alta is known more for its "old world" style of wine. A higher elevation equates to a shorter growing season, which in turn produces brighter fruit flavors and a wine that is lighter on the palate.




Rioja Alavesa


Despite sharing a similar climate as the Alta region, the Rioja Alavesa produces wines with a fuller body and higher acidity.  Vineyards in the area have a low vine density with large spacing between rows. This is due to the relatively poor conditions of the soil with the vines needing more distance from each other and less competition for the nutrients in the surrounding soil.




Rioja Baja


Unlike the more continental climate of the Alta and Alavesa, the Rioja Baja is strongly influenced by a Mediterranean climate which makes this area the warmest and driest of the Rioja. In the summer months, drought can be a significant viticultural hazard, though since the late 1990s irrigation has been permitted. Temperatures in the summer typically reach 35 °C (95 °F).  A number of the vineyards are actually located in nearby Navarra but the wine produced from those grapes belongs to the Rioja appellation. Unlike the typically pale Rioja wine, Baja wines are very deeply coloured and can be highly alcoholic with some wines at 18% alcohol by volume. They typically do not have much acidity or aroma and are generally used as blending components with wines from other parts of the Rioja.