Savor Rioja’s Finest Wines at Haro’s Barrio de la Estación

By: Genevieve Mc Carthy / Last updated: March 12, 2024

Immerse yourself in Rioja’s rich history at the Barrio de la Estación. This one-of-a-kind district is lined with back-to-back estates boasting the region’s most prestigious wineries. The neighborhood’s story began in the early 1860s when the chug of locomotives replaced the clip-clop of horses. This revolutionized Rioja’s wine transportation.

Barrio de la Estación in Haro, La Rioja
Barrio de la Estación in Haro, La Rioja

Located in the Rioja Alta town of Haro, this area was a crossroads between France and the industrial Basque Country. The onslaught of phylloxera in France during the 1860s led to its extensive use. The French bought and transported wines to make up for their famously bad harvests of 1863 and 1867. Consequently, the “barrio” developed around the train station with their export depots. But phylloxera reached Spain, too, forcing the French depots to close. New ones, owned by Spaniards, opened up in their place.

The oldest winery established in Barrio de la Estación was R. López de Heredia y Landeta in 1877. It was followed by Compañía Vinícola del Norte de España (CVNE) in 1879, Gómez Cruzado in 1886, La Rioja Alta S.A. in 1890, and Bodegas Bilbaínas in 1901. Bodegas Muga was founded in 1932 in the center of Haro. It moved its winery to the iconic Barrio in 1970. Lastly, Roda created their super premium estate in the Barrio in 1987.

Visiting Barrio de la Estación

Rioja Alta tasting room in Barrion de la Estación
Rioja Alta wine tasting bar in Barrio de la Estación

The other thing that has made the Barrio a “destination” is that most of the wineries now offer food tastings and wines. These are available in quaint, cozy outdoor sidewalk wine bars (“Terrazas”).

Additionally, elegant indoor spaces are open to the general public who want to taste wines as a stand-alone activity while not partaking in a formal tour.

You can spend a glorious afternoon in the sunshine, walking from property to property. At each one, you can taste wines and enjoy tapas. What more could a wine lover ask for?

District Station Passport

The Barrio de la Estación has a cool “Passport” you can buy for yourself or as a gift for any wine lover. It gives you access to 6 Wine Bars in this beautiful neighborhood. Wineries accept your passport for payment, and it will also include access to six great wines.

  •     C.V.N.E.- Imperial Reserva
  •     Muga – Muga Selección Especial
  •     Gómez Cruzado – Viña Dorana
  •     La Rioja Alta SA. – Viña Ardanza
  •     RODA – Sela
  •     Bodegas Bilbaínas – Viña Pomal / La Vicalanda Blanco

The passport also includes six delicious tapas to complement your wine tastings. You can enjoy the visits all in one day or spread them out – the passport is valid for a full year after purchase, and each winery will stamp it upon your visit. Between December and January, there is a festive Christmas Passport.

Barrio de la Estación Opening Hours

Bodegas Bilbaínas09:30 – 17:0010:00 – 17:3010:00 – 16:00
CVNE09:30 – 16:3009:30 – 17:30
Muga09:00 – 15:0010:00 – 15:00
Gómez Cruzado10:00 – 14:3010:00 – 14:3010:00 – 14:30
La Rioja Alta SA10:30 – 17:3011:00 – 15:0011:00 – 15:00
Bodegas Roda10:30 – 15:0010:30 – 15:0010:30 – 15:00
Note: La Rioja Alta and Muga served the most extensive range of hot and cold tapas, while the others offer more casual fare

Cata del Barrio de la Estación

Most of the wineries are open to the public for tours on an individual basis. However, apart from the fabulous tours and tastings, the entire “Barrio” has taken a life of its own. This is primarily due to the annual “Cata del Barrio de la Estación.” It has become so popular recently that it tends to sell out almost a year in advance.

The two-day event starts with a Master Class led by a renowned wine expert. Past instructors have included famous figures like Tim Atkin and Josep “Pitu” Roca. The wine expert, “Machinist,” is always a surprise, revealed just before the event. Your ticket grants you winery tours at Gómez Cruzado, Roda, Muga, CVNE, La Rioja Alta, and Bilbaínas.

Sample 12 premium wines (2 from each winery) in Riedel glasses, along with 7 tapas and a dessert. The wineries ‘ live music and fun activities complement this perfect day for wine lovers. 

For more information and booking tickets, click here.

Getting to and from Barrio de la Estación

Always, always, always organize a driver in advance if you will be tasting wines!

Recommended taxis in the area:

Taxi Haro (Dionisio): +34 615 89 15 19

Taxi Haro (José): +34 660 55 41 88

Rioja & Rioja Alavesa: Enotaxi Sasazu (César): +34 688 82 07 59

Private car with English-speaking drivers: Talur


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Genevieve Mc Carthy

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