White Rioja

(ree-YOH-ha), white, same as Macabeo or Viura and sometimes Verdejo
(mack-ah-BAY-oh), (vi-YOUR-ah), (var-DAY-hoe)
Synonyms: Maccebéo, Macabeu, Maccabeu, Viura

Wine Name: Macabeo, Viura, Verdejo, White Rioja

Background: Usually a blend, white Rioja is often composed of low acid grapes Macebeo and Verdejo. These are widely grown in the Rioja region of Spain as well as the Cava producing areas south of Barcelona. They are not very aromatic, and are relatively neutral grapes often used for blending but also used on its own in many Spanish white wines. The wine is low acid and goes with many savory dishes.

Classic Brands and Sources: Artadi, Bodegas Bretón, Martínez Bujanda, Enomar, Marqués de Caceres, Marqués de Murrieta, La Rioja Alta


Style #1 – typical Spanish style
varietal or blended

Body – light

Acidity – low to medium (-)

Sweetness – dry

Tannins – low



Wine and food pairing guidelines:
pairs well with less acidic, more savory dishes with herbs

Foods and Entrees that usually pair:
fish/shellfish baked or poached with a savory sauce, or fried, frittatas, seafood pasta, polenta, pesto, white pizzas, risotto, savory soups, vegetable dishes

Cheese Pairings:
American, Colby, Mild cheddar, Velveeta, Double Glouchester (similar to mild cheddar), Fontina, Gouda, Manchego, Monterey Jack, Mozzarella, Provolone, Triple Creme, St André, Zamarano (Spanish sheep’s milk cheese), Brie and Camembert (without rinds)

See also Appetizers for White Rioja wine