La Rioja is undoubtedly the most famous of the Spanish appellations, and one of only two (with Priorat) to benefit from the rank of DOC. Located in the south of the Basque Country, in the administrative region of the same name, it has benefited since the 19th century from close ties established with Bordeaux to modernize its production well before the Spanish wine revolution of the 1980s. The red wines of Rioja have continued to strengthen their image to position themselves among the best wines in the world. Located on the upper Ebro River and bordered by the Cantabrian Mountains and the Sierra de la Demanda, its vineyard covers almost 63,000 hectares. Differences in altitude and climate have led to a subdivision into three sub-regions (Rioja Alta, Rioja Alavesa and Rioja Baja) which offer Tempranillo in structured or more flexible versions. This great Iberian vine, well adapted to barrel aging, capable of producing great aging wines, can be blended with Grenache, which likes the hottest areas (Rioja Baja).