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August 22, 2009


Filed under: Spain, Travel, Wine — anotherheader @ 5:34 pm

Stainless steel inside Bodegas Juan Alcorta

Stainless steel inside Bodegas Juan Alcorta

Don’t be confused.  This log entry is about our stay in Laguardia, Spain and not the airport of the same name in New York City.  There’s little debate that Laguardia, Spain makes for a better vacation destination than the NYC airport.

A hill town encircled by 13th-century walls, Laguardia is in La Rioja, Spain’s premiere red wine region.  A tour of Bodegas Juan Alcorta was on the day’s schedule.  Nervous from our navigation foibles on our last outing, we gave ourselves 45 minutes to drive the 25 minutes to the winery.  Beyond the TomTom, we had instructions from both a web site and Google Maps.  We had heard that the winery was hard to find, so we came prepared.  Prepared to get lost, it seems.  With the computer-generated maps leading us the wrong way and the web instructions hard to dovetail with our current location, we wandered aimlessly around Logroño.  Under the stress, the TomTom system did what the BeckBeck system usually seems to do in this exact situation.  It shut down and wouldn’t restart.  Now we were seriously lost.  Asking for instructions alongside the road with our pigeon Spanish only increased the confusion.  I can’t tell you how, in the end, we managed to find the road to Juan Alcorta.  Our route was hardly direct.  As usual we arrived at the bodega ten minutes late for the tour but still able to squeeze in.


It’s not like we missed much.  The tour of ultra-modern Juan Alcorta winery was in Spanish.  But, being on a number of very similar tours recently, the language barrier really didn’t matter.  The description of the modern wine making process is nearly identical from winery to winery.

After the tasting, we headed back towards Laguardia trying to find, to no avail, a wine tasting bar in Oyon along the way.  Disappointingly, we were never able to sample the best wines produced in this region of Spain on our visit.  We will have to make another trip.

Becky makes a new friend

Becky makes a new friend

Later we headed up to Laguardia’s car-free old town searching for dinner.  We eventually found Bar La Muralla and waited for the restaurant to open.  Bar La Muralla opens for dinner at 9 pm and closes shortly afterwards at 10:30 pm.  After a comforting, regional-style meal it was time for coffee, at least for Becky.

“Café sin café,” she requested from the waiter.

The waiter was confused.

Eventually the waiter translated the “Becky Speak.”  Becky did not receive an empty coffee cup and instead received the decaffeinated coffee she desired.  But, maybe, she needed the caffeine after all.



Bodegas Juan Alcorta:

More stainless at Juan Alcorta

More stainless at Juan Alcorta


1 Comment »

  1. Keep your hands off my grapes!

    Comment by No Mere Mortal — August 22, 2009 @ 6:02 pm

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