Ramón Bilbao Rioja is one of Spain’s best known wine producers. Since its inception in Haro in the Rioja Alta in 1924, Bodegas Ramón Bilbao has gone from strength to strength and built up an enviable portfolio of wines from both the Rioja and Rueda regions. Ramón Bilbao Rioja produces Rioja red, white and rosé Rioja wines spanning the various classification levels, and even has its own flagship wine that is a cross of both.
The best Ramón Bilbao Rioja wines to try
The range of Ramón Bilbao Rioja has something to offer every wine lover, no matter your budget or tastes.
- Ramón Bilbao Rioja Crianza 2013 demonstrates the winery’s commitment to quality at all levels. This is a highly affordable – and highly drinkable – Rioja Crianza. From 100% Tempranillo grapes that are grown in plots located close to Haro, the wine is aged for 14 months in new American oak and a further 8 months in the bottle itself. The high quality fruit combined with careful ageing gives this wine a beautiful balance of ripe red cherry flavours and oak influences: The fruit is backed up with structure, gentle tannin and vanilla flavours from the oak. Pair this one with a juicy grilled steak and you won’t be disappointed.
- Ramón Bilbao Rioja Crianza Edición Limitada 2013 is another Crianza. Again pure Tempranillo, this limited edition sees longer ageing than the wine above, with 14 months in oak and 10 months in bottle. The wine is blended from the best available plots of Tempranillo, and offers the drinker tasty cherry fruit alongside slightly firmer structure and tertiary aromas of vanilla and coconut from the oak. This wine can stand up to some seriously meaty dishes, with game birds being a particularly suitable match.
- Ramón Bilbao Rioja Reserva 2011 is a step-up from the Crianza level wines, though maintains a very strong price/quality ratio. This Rioja Reserva is a blend of Tempranillo with Carignan and Graciano. The additional grape varieties and longer ageing time makes for an altogether more complex wine. The wood influences are more apparent here, with a great tannic structure and more well-defined tertiary aromas and flavours. This is a perfect Sunday roast wine, ideal with slowly roasted cuts of beef and lamb.
- Mirto de Ramón Bilbao 2009 expresses the winery’s modern and progressive side. This is a modern style of Rioja, aged exclusively in new French oak. The fruit for the wine is 100% Tempranillo, is a selection of the best available from seven top villages close to Haro. This is a full-bodied, powerful wine with a huge concentration of fruit flavours backed up with the oak backbone. Tertiary aromas from the oak range from coffee to vanilla and spice. This one will sing when paired with a meaty stew, such as a Rioja-style potato and Chorizo sausage stew.
- Ramón Bilbao Rioja Rosé 2015, in stark contrast to the wine above, is a light, fresh, fruity and fun rosé. This one is 100% Grenache and could be mistaken for a Provençal rosé given its light colour. This is beautiful by itself, though is also a great match for just about any light entrée dish you could imagine. Try it with a light vegetable omelette.
Which is your favourite Ramón Bilbao Rioja wine? Do you have any interesting food and wine pairings that we’ve missed?