The elegance of escaping to La Rioja wine country for a mystery dinner at Bodegas BAIGORRI is unquestionable. Each year one of the highlights of the European Wine Bloggers Conference is a series of mystery dinners at local wineries. This year we were fortunate to attend a #DWCC13 #EWBC #Baigorriemotion mystery dinner at Bodegas BAIGORRI. Our Bodegas BAIGORRI visit was a wonderful introduction to modern Rioja. The winery is located in Rioja Alavesa, an area within Rioja known for its high quality wines. Rioja Alavesa occupies a special microclimate, which is protected from both the Northern cold and wet winds and the Southern heat.
Located in the town of Samaniego in Álava Bodegas BAIGORRI is a very stunning winery. BODEGA BAIGORRI perfectly captures the beautiful setting at the foot of the Cantabrian Mountains, with stunning vineyard views and the Ebro River in the distance. This modern winery was founded in 1996 and produced its first vintage in 2001. Deigned and built by architect Iñaki Aspiazu Bodegas BAIGORRI is captivating architecturally. You will recognize this architectural gem immediately upon first sight. We arrived at night and the view was absolutely stunning. There was Bodegas BAIGORRI, a jewel like glass box, lighting up the Rioja night. From the stunning reception area level or viewing area the winery descends into the landscape. Most of the winery is below the surface, integrated into the landscape.
After welcoming drinks and tapas in the viewing area we toured this amazing winery. The winery’s five special spaces include the viewing area, tasting room, multipurpose room, the shop and the restaurant. The winery takes advantage of gravity in the wine making process. During our visit we had welcome drinks, toured the winemaking operations and concluded with dinner in the restaurant.
Dining at Bodegas BAIGORRI
The restaurant at Bodegas BAIGORRI is well positioned within the winery to view both the barrel room and vineyards. Moreover, dining at Bodega BAIGORRI restaurant was a gastronomic delight. It was delightful to be introduced to various dishes nicely paired with Bodega BAIGORRI wines. Our menu for the evening include the following:
1. Starters: Black pudding delights with homemade apple chutney
There was a vegetarian variation of the starter course as well.
2. First Course: Beetroot gazpacho with black seeds and arbequina olive oil
3. Second Course: Iberian pork jowl slowly cooked in BAIGORRI Maceración Carboónica with garnish. The vegetarian variation of this course was a mushroom risotto.
4. Dessert: Panna cotta BAIGORRI with blueberry sauce, iced vanilla and gelée of Rosado and Blanco
The Bodegas BAIGORRI wines that we enjoyed with dinner included BAIGORRI Blanco Fermentado En Barrica 2011 and Bodegas BAIGORRI Reserva 2006 & Crianza 2009.
It was a special treat to share this dining experience with fellow wine bloggers. After dinner it was equally exciting to thank the chef and the Bodegas BAIGORRI staff who hosted us that evening. It was not surprising to discover that Bodegas BAIGORRI gets great reviews on Tripadvisor. Spain’s La Rioja wine region is wine country perfect where you can experience both old and modern traditions. Bodegas BAIGORRI was indeed a wonderful introduction to modern Rioja. Bodegas Baigorri is indeed the shining star in the Rioja sky. I invite you to join me in my travels in Spain and elsewhere in search of the best in Spaswinefood. You may also visit my travel column at the Examiner.
© Sharon Parsons
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