As Rioja faces serious problems, a new generation is reshaping Spain's most famous wine.
This was an interesting and informative article and rather surprising, as I read Decanter every month and there is annual Spain special with annual subscription. So I wasn't aware that some of the big bodegas are in hot water it seems, however interestingly, in Mandarin the word crisis contains both the word/character for danger and opportunity.
So it does seem as if Rioja is at a critical junction, as the old ways of doing things are no longer working and it's time for a paradigm shift in their SOP. I have read about the new village classifications and single vineyard designations, but those new wave wines haven't made it out to Asia/Taiwan just yet.
It's interesting how things in life and in the wine world are circular in nature at times, as starting in the 70's and 80's up until pretty recently there was a trend to not have any white varietals in a red blend. But with climate change, it does seem like it could become more necessary in the immediate future.
As to Tim Atkin's article I agree with most points, except the one about price. As out here in Asia with shipping costs, alcohol tax, and markup Rioja wines cost anywhere from 30% to 100 % then they cost at the point of origin. But I do agree that we might need to shell out a few more euros or dollars if we want to keep drinking authentic, terroir driven Rioja. And yes, white Rioja is a great secret in the world of wine; let's hope it stays that way. Cheers!