The intense Rioja promotional program in the United States were launched in the state of Texas, specifically in Houston. Establishments in the city offered wine tastings and samplings of Rioja wines from more than 35 DOCa Rioja wineries. The central event of the week was the Rioja Wine & Tapas Festival, which brought together more than 1,300 wine lovers in the emblematic building The Corinthian.
As part of the Rioja Control Board’s promotion and communication plan in the United States, the state of Texas hosted Rioja Week. An intense calendar in which the wines of 35 wineries of the Designation were the protagonists of the Texas social agenda through promotions, tastings and samplings in different establishments.
The central event of the week was the Rioja Wine & Tapas Festival, an activity that has already been well received in the cities of Los Angeles, Chicago and New York and which on this occasion brought together more than 1,300 wine lovers in one of Houston’s nerve centers, the emblematic building The Corinthian.
The initiative counted with the participation of the prestigious culinary event organizer Cochon555 and with the invaluable collaboration of 20 renowned chefs from prestigious restaurants across the American scene such as Ritual (Felix Florez), Izakaya (Jean-Philippe Gaston), Americas (David Cordua), Cake & Bacon (Jeff Weinstock), BCN (Luis Roger), Helen Greek (William Wright), El Mesón (Pedro Ángel García), Poitin (Dominick Lee), Navigation (Alex Padilla), Acorn Seekers (Sergio Marsal), The Four Seasons (Rafael Gonzalez), Southern (Brandi Key) and Landry’s (Jon Luc Royer, Dan Bridges and Mike Frietsch). In addition, well-known media outlets such as the Houston Chronicle, Houston Press, Housten Business Chronicle and FOX echoed the party and attended. In the United States Rioja wines are becoming more and more highly valued.
The various events aimed at the professional public allowed this group to learn first-hand about the wines of the wineries of the Appellation and the director of the point-of-sale program Ana Fabiano, Rioja ambassador in the USA, delved into the culture and values of Rioja wines through presentations and seminars in different points of sale in the Texan capital such as Goody Goody, a retailer in the area that was one of the official collaborators of the week.
The Corinthian building hosted the main event of the “Rioja Wine & Tapas Festival” week.
Ana Fabiano pointed out that “Rioja is making a strong impression on American society and it is important to promote this type of event where both end consumers and professionals get to know first-hand the values of Rioja and the authenticity of the region in a relaxed and pleasant atmosphere”. He also stressed “the importance of the participation of the winemakers themselves in this type of event, as they facilitate knowledge of wine culture and there is no one better than them to convey these values through their personal stories”. In the American market, the third destination after the United Kingdom and Germany, said Fabiano, “Rioja wines are increasingly more and more highly valued”.
José Luis Lapuente, general manager of the DOCa Rioja, said that “with this action, in addition to wanting attendees to enjoy and learn about Rioja wine, we also seek notoriety because, in the end, not only do we want it to be a pleasant and unforgettable experience, but we also want it to generate a great impact and make Rioja’s quality and dynamism even more noticeable”.
Part of the money raised in this fourth edition will go to Houston farmers affected by Hurricane Harvey last November.