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tapasDo you fancy eating some great tapas in London, including some you cannot normally get? Come along to the party on the 28th & 29th of June, 2008 then.

The Rioja region are organising a tapas festival here and not only are some of London’s best tapas & Spanish restaurants attending to serve their specialities, but 10 of the top tapas bars from Rioja are attending too.

Did I mention you could drink lots of different Rioja wines?

The festival is called “Tapas Fantasticas” (“it does exactly what it says on the tin”) and they are going to take over a corner of Brick Lane, famous for curries and being a melting pot for cultures from around the world, where wineries & restaurants will try and give you a flavour of today’s Rioja – food, wine & culture.

You can read more about this on the event’s site, but there will be 18 wineries representing different types of Rioja, including Dinastia Vivanco, CVNE, Marques de Murrieta, and Campo Viejo.

The restaurants from London include Camino, Moro, Pintxo People and Cambio de Tercio, as well as some of my favourites from Calle Laurel, the tapas ‘heart’ of Logroño, such as La Pata Negra (serving exquisite jamon & cheese rolls) and La Cueva (serving mushrooms with garlic butter). Yum!

Olly SmithAs a special bonus, Olly Smith, he of Saturday Kitchen, Richard & Judy’s Wine Club, that Weakest Link Special (you must have seen this?!) and all-round excellent dude, and Susy Atkins will be running some seminars on Rioja wine. Olly has apparently selected the 2007 Vivanco Viura/Malvasia and the 2007 Vivanco Rosado as the best examples of these styles for the seminar.

If you have the chance to come along, please do, and make sure you come over to the Dinastia Vivanco table as we will have the 2007 White & Rose as well as the 2004 Dinastia Vivanco Crianza and 2001 Reserva.

Entry is FREE, and there are lots of different wines to sample and buy while you are there.

See you there!