Ramón Bilbao Boosts Spanish Wine Education In Russia

Press Release

Ramón Bilbao Boosts Spanish Wine Education In Russia

Rioja’s Ramón Bilbao is flying leading UK and European Spanish wine specialists to one of its main markets, Russia, later this month in a bid to educate the Trade there about why, and how, Spanish wines are revolutionising the market worldwide.

The Spanish Wine Academy will be hosted by Ramón Bilbao Technical Director Rodolfo Bastida in Moscow on 28th and 29th May, with the UK’s Sarah Jane Evans MW and Tim Atkin MW, plus Belgium-based Pedro Ballesteros MW, joining a roster of international experts.

The Academy is the result of Ramón Bilbao’s Russian Brand Ambassador, and former Sommelier, Roman Sosnovskiy’s desire to educate his home market about how Spanish wine is more than bulk, and that Rioja goes beyond Crianza.

 “Since we started exporting to Russia in 2011, the Spanish wine market has grown to be second in volume here behind Italy with Crianza the fastest growing category - but value is on the low side for both,” explains Sosnovskiy.  “It’s time to delve deep into the full spectrum of wines that this inspirational vinous country has, and illustrate this with premium, innovative wines from different DOs and producers.”

Sosnovskiy, who will represent Russia in the Asian Sommelier Championship in Japan later this year, believes there is a big education piece to be achieved in the Russian restaurant trade.  “Over the last few years, Russia has become a firm focus market for trendsetters and world-famous critics and sommeliers,” he adds.  “This is something we’ve considered when building our schedule of respected speakers, including an afternoon of sommelier insight from two of Spain’s best: Carlos Echapresto from Restaurante Venta Moncalvillo in La Rioja and David Robledo from Santceloni in Madrid.  It’s time to show this market just what Spain and Spanish wine can bring them.”

The timetable includes tastings examining the wines of Rueda, where Ramón Bilbao produces its Verdejo and Sauvignon Blanc whites, and Ribera del Duero and Rias Baixas where sister wineries - the biodynamic Cruz de Alba and Albarino-specialising Mar de Frades - are located.  Rioja born-and-bred Rodolfo Bastida will host dinners that focus on new, high altitude vineyards in Rioja Baja and four decades of winemaking at Ramón Bilbao.

The Spanish Wine Academy, Moscow - 28th & 29th May

  • Pedro Ballesteros MW - Introduction to Spanish wines, with a focus on Ribera del Duero and Rueda: tasting of 12 wines
  • Tim Atkin MW - The Rioja DO today, and the present and future of the region: tasting of 12 wines
  • Sarah Jane Evans MW - the white wines of Galicia: tasting of 12 wines
  • Carlos Echaspersto and David Robledo on the world of the sommelier in Spain.

Editor’s Note

Established in Haro in the heart of Rioja Alta in 1924, family-owned Ramón Bilbao is currently both the number one Rioja brand in the Spanish On-Trade (7.8% market share) and one of the fastest growing Rioja brands in the Off-Trade (+29%) in its competitive set [Nielsen data].  Rodolfo Bastida sources grapes from 180 hectares of owned vineyards, with access to a further 900 hectares via long-term grower contracts.  Bastida believes that the grapes he selects should be allowed to speak for themselves in his wines, and not be hidden by over-ageing and over-oaking.  The producer has been owned by Zamora Company, one of the largest family beverage companies in Spain, since 1999 and is distributed by Enotria&Coe in the UK.


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Date of issue:                    May 2018

Further information:       emma wellings pr     020 8996 5168      alison@ew-pr.co.uk