American sommeliers and wine consumers are still mastering Rioja’s multiple styles and how they pair with food. With that objective, several wine professionals who are Rioja aficionados gathered at The Culinary Institute of America's Greystone campus in the Napa Valley to explore the topic together.

Tasting organizer Adrian Murcia is the author of a blog devoted to Rioja wine and food. To assist him in leading the tasting, he turned to Karen MacNeil, chair of wine studies at the Culinary Institute of America and author of the best-selling book, The Wine Bible. The other panelists included Skye LaTorre, sommelier of A16 restaurant in San Francisco; Paul Roberts, wine director for the French Laundry in Yountville; and Traci Dutton, a wine instructor at the Culinary Institute. Murcia assembled a broad range of Rioja wines, but left it up to CIA chefs to come up with food matches.

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