DRINK DIFFERENT: SAME NAME – DIFFERENT GRAPE
It is a measure of the sheer amount of land under vine in Spain that the country’s premier red grape, Tempranillo, is also the world’s third most planted wine grape variety – despite the fact that 88% of that global planting is within Spain’s borders.
Wines made from Tempranillo offer complex notes of berries, plum, tobacco, vanilla, leather and herb. The grape is usually the senior partner in a blend (as in Rioja, where it is combined with Garnacha, Mazuelo and Graciano), and less frequently bottled on its own.
Different in style but still unmistakably Tempranillo-like, are the wines made from the Tinto Roriz grape over the border in Portugal, where it is most commonly partnered with Touriga Nacional and Tinto Francesca.
That similarity to Tempranillo isn’t really a surprise – because it is in fact the same grape, just masquerading under a different name. So if you like Rioja but fancy a change, a glass of Tinto Roriz is a safe bet.