I have finally made it to a winery in La Rioja (after being here for a month). Better late than never, right? La Rioja is famous for it’s red wine, especially in Haro, the wine-producing center. So my friends and I made a reservation to tour the winery and do a tasting at the family-owned Bodegas Muga, one of the most traditional and well-known wineries in La Rioja. Also, it is only 6 euros for the tasting, tour and you get to keep the wine glass, incredible!
So we hopped on an early bus and headed out to Haro. The views along this route are just incredible. Mountains and vineyards as far as you can see, sprinkled with quaint little villages. Now is the perfect time to go too since all the leaves are changing on the vineyards for fall. Just spectacular.
The tour was really cool; we had an adorable, witty guide who kept making jokes about a group of annoying Frenchmen on the tour. It was HILARIOUS! Example 1: when several of the Frenchies stuck their hands into one of the barrels with pressed grapes and ate them, she said, “It’s always the French.” Example 2: when one of the Frenchies couldn’t find France on the list of countries Muga exports to, she said, “that’s because France will never admit that it drinks Spanish wine.” ZING! I loved her.
Anywho, this was also a great time to visit because our tour took place smack in the middle of the wine harvest (vendimia), so everyone was working on bringing in the last of the grapes. So periodically throughout the tour, we would have to move out of the way of the workers or get to see them in action, moving wines from the barrels, filling the bottles, ect. It was fascinating (for me at least) to get to see this process in action, up close and personal, instead of listening to a guide blab on and on about it. Of course the wine at the end was delicious, though next time I don’t think I will do a wine tasting at 11am, or if I do, I won’t skip breakfast beforehand. Tipsy Liz.
In conclusion, Bodegas Muga gets two thumbs up, but remember, eat before you go and don’t eat the grapes in the barrels unless you want to get made fun of by the tour guide.