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New York hosts the first international experience of the Station District

  • Rioja Railway Wine Experience to be held on 22 May at Manhattan’s iconic High Line.

 For the first time, five great wineries from Haro’s most emblematic district travel abroad together to show the world the greatness of their wines and the beauty of a unique destination in the world.

 Haro, January 2019—On 22 May, the Station District is travelling to New York to celebrate the first ‘Rioja Railway Wine Experience’, a meeting to showcase the winemaking philosophy and the great wines of five of the most important wineries in La Rioja and the Spanish wine scene: Bodegas Gómez Cruzado, La Rioja Alta, S.A., Bodegas Bilbaínas Viña Pomal, Bodegas Muga and Bodegas RODA.

The setting chosen for the celebration of this new event is the High Line, an iconic area located in the district of Manhattan. It is an elevated section of the East Side Line of the now-extinct New York Central Railroad. The choice of venue is a nod to the Haro railway station, where the famous Barrio de la Estación gradually came about with the construction of major wineries in the mid-nineteenth century.

The Rioja Railway Wine Experience will include some significant milestones. An exclusive historical master tasting for top-level American journalists and tasters will be led by Pedro Ballesteros MW, the first Spanish Master of Wine, who will provide a tour of the century-old history of the district and its wines. The five wineries have also organised a Grand Tasting targeting both wine industry professionals and a top gourmet audience. In total, more than 600 attendees are going to enjoy some of the best wines in La Rioja along with various tapas specially created for the occasion by leading US chefs.

This initiative reflects the international focus of the Station District wineries, promoting their historical and cultural value as the cradle of Rioja wine and as one of the top wine tourism destinations in the world, unique in its concentration of century-old wineries. On this first occasion, Rioja Railway Wine Experience will link the philosophy, culture, tradition and recognised quality of the wines made in this historic La Rioja district and New York City, providing a late nineteenth century ambiance with a 1920s look. It is undoubtedly a unique occasion for all lovers of wine and Spanish culture in the United States, a key market for Rioja Wine where a large percentage of visitors to our wine region come from.

Haro Station District committed to James Beard Foundation

Rioja Railway Wine Experience will also have a charitable facet. Thirty per cent of the revenues from tickets will go to the James Beard Foundation, the key culinary NGO in the United States, known for its annual James Beard awards. The purpose of the US foundation is to create programmes to improve food and sustainability, guided by values such as respect, transparency, diversity, sustainability and equality.

Global scope of Haro Station Wine Experience rewarded by Wine Routes of Spain

ACEVIN 4th Wine Routes of Spain Wine Tourism Awards recognise the quality of the event jointly organised by the seven wineries comprising the iconic Haro district.

The Haro Station Wine Experience has been given the Best Wine Tourism Initiative prize at the fourth Wine Routes of Spain Wine Tourism Awards, organised by the Spanish Association of Wine Cities (ACEVIN), with the support of the Spanish Secretariat of State for Tourism and Turespaña. This activity, whose third session was held last June, was given the award “for the cooperation of a group of Rioja Alta wineries, located in an iconic district full of history, in organising an event of global scope that combines tradition, premium wine tasting, the cuisine of renowned chefs, unique proposals in each winery and a festive and playful atmosphere around wine culture.”

This recognition is the result of the decision of a jury panel consisting of a score of experts from the wine tourism industry. They represent the organising associations as well as professionals from the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and the Environment, the wine industry, including the Spanish Wine Federation, the Spanish Conference of Wine Control Boards and the Spanish Wine Market Observatory, the wine tourism industry, including the Spanish Association of Wine Museums, the Spanish Wine and Food Tourism Association, in addition to renowned critics, writers and trade journalists.

The Haro Station Wine Experience thereby collects a new addition to its list of achievements which includes 2016 Rioja Capital Award for a Unique Initiative Linked to Food and Agriculture Resources given by the Government of La Rioja, the Best Wine Tourism Experience at the 2016 International Wine Challenge Awards Spain and the 2015 Innovative Wine Tourism Experiences Best of Wine Tourism award granted by the Great Wine Capitals network.

The prize-giving ceremony is to be held on 16 November at an event held in the Royal Tapestry Factory, Madrid, to be attended by the Secretary of State for Tourism as well as, possibly, the Minister of Industry, Trade and Tourism.

Haro Station Wine Experience

With three successful events behind it, the Haro Station Wine Experience has been consecrated as one of the great wine and wine tourism events in Spain, where wine lovers and professionals come from all parts of the world to experience first-hand a great wine festival sponsored by the seven renowned wineries that comprise this district in Haro, the cradle of Rioja wine: López de Heredia Viña Tondonia, CVNE, Gómez Cruzado, La Rioja Alta, S.A., Viña Pomal Bodegas Bilbaínas, Bodegas Muga and Bodegas RODA.

Success of the most gourmet edition of the Haro Station Wine Experience

The third edition of the Haro Station Wine Experience, the most exclusive and gourmet edition, will close its doors after a successful first day. On a sunny, festive day in Haro, around 3,500 people, including end consumers and the press, have enjoyed a journey through Spanish wine growing history where the best wines from the La Rioja region, along with the most prominent local cuisine, have been the main players in an unforgettable experience.

“Wine and its culture have triumphed today, driven by the vivid movement which is that of the Haro Station Wine Experience,” Agustín Santolaya, the rotating president of the Station Wine Experience and Managing Director at Bodegas RODA stated.

“It has been amazing to see how the public has enjoyed the experience, enveloped in a magical surrounding filled with parties and happiness. Great La Rioja cuisine, put on by true artists like Francis Paniego, Carlos Echapresto and Juan Ángel Rodrigálvarez, went perfectly with the 14 splendid wines that we have tasted.”

The seven host wine cellars, López de Heredia Viña Tondonia, CVNE, Gómez Cruzado, La Rioja Alta, S.A., Viña Pomal Bodegas Bilbaínas, Bodegas Muga and Bodegas RODA, have offered a careful selection of 14 internationally renowned wines throughout the day, which have been tasted in a specially selected glass for this unique day, that the guests have taken away as a souvenir. Wines that have been perfectly combined with seven dishes from the best local cuisine, created for the occasion by the La Rioja Michelin Star chefs Francis Paniego -El Portal del Echaurren- and the Echapresto brothers – Venta Moncalvillo-.

Creations that have fused the renowned traditional yet innovative La Rioja cuisine with a proposal to delight the fans: “Echaurren ham and chicken croquettes” with Viña Tondonia Red Reserva 2005 and Viña Bosconia Red Reserva 2006 from López de Hederia Viña Tondonia winery, “Pork rib toasted brioche with honey sauce, spicy ‘alegría riojana’ chillies and pickled aubergines” with Viña Ardanza 2009 and Gran Reserva 904 2009 from La Rioja Alta, S.A., “Tail cuts with red wine over a creamed potato and its own sauce” with Muga Reserve Special Edition 2012 and Prado Enea Gran Reserva 2004 from Bodegas Muga winery, “Migas del pastor (breadcrumbs) with cooked meats from La Rioja, grapes and egg yolks” with Monopole Clásico 2015 and Imperial Reserva 2014 from CVNE, “Alubias pochas (succulent beans) with lightly fried vegetables and chillies in oil” with Honorable 2014 and Pancrudo 2016 from Gómez Cruzado, “Glazed cod with La Rioja sauce” with Viña Pomal Compromiso 2015 and Viña Pomal Gran Reserva 2011 from Viña Pomal Bodegas Bilbaínas winery and “Beef snouts stewed like ‘the boss’ showed us“ with RODA I 2010 and RODA 2013 from Bodegas RODA winery.

“After months of preparation, it has been very rewarding to see how the guests enjoyed each of the featured pairings. It is our duty to show the public the great culinary potential that La Rioja has, which is unbeatable when it is accompanied by the wines from the Station Wine Experience, and events like this are the perfect chance for that,” Ignacio Echapresto, a chef at Venta Moncalvillo stated. “It has been an honour for us to be part of such an ambitious project and to contribute to positioning our region amongst the best in the world,” added Paniego.

Also, the master confectioner Juan Ángel Rodrigálvarez, winner of the 2010 National Gastronomy Award for the Best Confectioner, gave it the final sweet touch with his “Maraví de Chocolate” dessert. “Being part of the amazing Haro Station Wine Experience line-up with a dessert like this has been an incredible opportunity. Events like the Haro Station Wine Experience are a sure bet for showcasing the quality of our products and the know-how of the region to the world,” he noted.

To reinforce the great entertaining atmosphere, the seven organising wine cellars have put on musical shows in the streets of the area, as well as different cultural and wine proposals with the added aim of giving the participants an insight into the art and culture of wine creation. So, the following stood out: “Disgorging the wine cellar” at Viña Pomal Bodegas Bilbaínas, “Imperial Aromas” at CVNE, “Cooperage, barrel breaking and barrels” at Bodegas Muga, “Artistic performance ‘Figures talk to wine’” at Bodegas Gómez Cruzado, “Artisanal racking” at La Rioja Alta, S.A., “Two architects: Juan Cabrera Latorre and Zaha Hadid” at López de Heredia Viña Tondonia and the “Projection”: “Each bottle is a reflection of our landscape” at Bodegas RODA.

Thanks to the successful third edition, the Haro Station Wine Experience is once again the embodiment of Spanish wine events, as the huge media coverage confirms thanks to the hundred national accredited journalists present.

It is a party that will continue on Monday 18th June, with the workshop for professionals which will bring together more than 800 people to Haro including journalists, sommeliers, Masters of Wine, wine and food critics, caterers, as well as thought leaders and international press from 11 countries. It is an appointment where the renowned MW Sarah Jane Evans will be the 2018 “Maquinista del Año,” giving a master tasting. It is an extravagant closing ceremony, matching up to an area that will soon start to prepare the next edition of this spectacular party.

The Best Food from La Rioja Will Shine at the Haro Station Wine Experience

The countdown has begun. In less than just two months, we will get to enjoy this incredibly unique experience: The Haro Station Wine Experience. This third edition, which will be held on June 16th, will be remembered for more than just its extraordinary selection of wines produced by the seven houses and organizers of the best wine experience in all of Spain. The culinary portion will also be another undisputed star of this important event, thanks to the wineries’ commitment to harmonizing their wines with the best cuisine from the La Rioja region.

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El Portal del Echaurren and Venta Moncalvillo, which have two and one Michelin stars respectively, are the restaurants that have been specially selected this year to participate in the event with exclusive creations that blend perfectly with the fourteen wines of international prestige that will be served by the seven wineries from the Station District. Francis Paniego, chef at El Portal del Echaurren, will cook three succulent dishes, while Ignacio Echapresto, head of the kitchen at Venta Moncalvillo, will present four other delicacies. A total of seven culinary creations that will represent La Rioja’s haute cuisine and which, tested by the wineries themselves, will go perfectly with the extraordinary wines that can be tasted throughout the day.

Selection of dishes and wines for the 2018 edition of the Haro Station Wine Experience:

El Portal del Echaurren.

  • Echuarren’s croquettes made of ham and chicken, smooth and creamy, with Viña Tondonia Tinto 2005 and Viña Bosconia Tinto Reserva 2006.
  • Toasted brioche with pork rib in a honey sauce, with La Rioja chili peppers and pickled eggplant with a Gran Reserva 904 from 2009 and Viña Ardanza 2009.
  • Beef snouts stewed the authentic way with a RODA 2013 and RODA I 2010.

Venta Moncalvillo.

  • “Shepherd’s Breadcrumbs” with cured meats from La Rioja, grapes and egg yolk with Monopole Clásico 2015 and Imperial Reserva 2014.
  • Pochas beans with stir-fried vegetables and chili pepper in oil with Honorable 2014 and Pancrudo 2016.
  • Confit cod with a Rioja sauce with Viña Pomal Compromiso 2015 and Viña Pomal Gran Reserva 2011.
  • Oxtail in red wine on top of a cream of potato and its own sauce with Muga Reserva Selección Especial 2012 and Prado Enea Gran Reserva 2004.

Both Francis Paniego, who will prepare the tapas for El Portal del Echaurren, and Ignacio and Carlos Echapresto, in charge of preparing the dishes for Venta Moncalvillo, are winners of Spain’s National Gastronomy Award in their respective categories, Francis Paniego and Ignacio Echapresto received the award in the chef category, while Carlos Echapresto received his in the sommelier category.

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Paniego doesn’t hide his enthusiasm when it comes to participating in the best culinary edition of the Haro Station Wine Experience, and for the occasion he has come up with two informal dishes that are no less daring than the others. Of course, the must-have croquettes by Marisa, his mother, a quick bite that’s easy to eat and that has been impressing palates for years in not only his hometown Ezcaray, but also at hundreds of culinary events around the world. Francis Paniego views his participation “as a challenge” and adds that he is “happy to participate in such a special experience and a celebration that is needed by the wine sector in order to appeal to a younger segment”.

Ignacio Echapresto has chosen to present “recipes that pay tribute to the culinary tradition from the La Rioja region, bringing back flavors from our family history”. In his selection, Carlos Echapresto also played an important role as one of the sommeliers who knows the most about wines from the region. According to the La Rioja native, “we have focused on a combination of products and flavors that go perfectly with the wines that will be tasted throughout the day”. In unison, both brothers declared: “We want everyone who attends the Haro Station Wine Experience to finish off the experience by saying, “what great food and wine there is in La Rioja!”.

In addition, since no meal can be enjoyed with a sweet ending, master pastry chef Juan Ángel Rodrigálvarez, winner of Spain’s National Gastronomy Award in 2010 for being the Best Confectioner Pastry Chef, will finish off the brilliant culinary portion with his chocolate Maraví. A dessert that combines intense cacao with the sweetness of almonds, the smoothness of AUBOCASSA extra virgin olive oil from Pla de Mallorca made with 100% Arbequina olives, and a touch of salt flakes. A dessert that owes its name to a cacao plantation in the Ecuadorian region of Guayaquil and that, in the words of its creator, “is an allusion to the wine world, which usually baptizes its wines with the names of the lands from which the grapes are harvested”. The pastry chef from La Rioja believes that participating in this culinary edition is “a unique occasion, especially since I will be doing so together with colleagues and friends like Francis, Carlos and Ignacio. I have no doubt that the event will be a turning point”.

The price for enjoying this festive day that celebrates wine and food from the La Rioja region will be €100, although the organizing wineries –López de Heredia Viña Tondonia, CVNE, Gómez Cruzado, La Rioja Alta, S.A., Viña Pomal Bodegas Bilbaínas, Bodegas Muga and Bodegas RODA– have made a limited number of tickets available at a special price in an advance sale for €80. Tickets can be purchased through the official website www.lacatadelbarriodelaestacion.com, where you can also reserve the bus and train tickets that can take you from the main cities in the area, as well as from Madrid.

The tickets include a tasting of the fourteen premium wines of international prestige, the seven dishes, and the dessert that will be offered by the guest chefs. In addition, each visitor will receive a Riedel glass specially selected to ensure that each wine can express all of its characteristics and personality. Riedel is an Austrian company that specializes in wine glassware, one of the leading brands when it comes to enjoying wine to the fullest.

Without a doubt, the Haro Station Wine Experience will be a guaranteed unforgettable experience for all those who attend, where you can enjoy great wines as they are paired with award-winning La Rioja cuisine, in addition to enjoying live music and a wide range of cultural and wine-related activities.