Last night I was surprised with dinner at Ventanas in NYC. Ventanas is a new Spanish tapas restaurant located in the very fashionable Meatpacking district underneath the Highline. Following in the footsteps of it’s two sister restaurants that I also love to frequent, Flor De Sol and Son Cubano, it successfully offers a wide variety of delicious small plates and oozes with romantic atmosphere. Our wine choice was a bottle of Ergo Tempranillo Rioja 2009 from Martin Codax. We have found that you simply cannot go wrong with wines from the Rioja region of Spain especially since they are known for producing the best Tempranillos. This medium bodied red was dark ruby in the glass and gave off aromas of dark fruit. The flavors of black cherry and plum gave way to a hint of spice and the smooth tannins made each sip a wonderful experience. The Ergo Tempranillo really paired well with all of the tapas dishes we selected. We sampled many but our top favorites were the camarones al ajillo (shrimp in garlic), frituras de queso de cabras (goat cheese fritas), and the empanadas espinaca (spinach and manchego empanadas). The plates were reasonably priced between $10-$22 and our wine was under $40. A word of warning that one bottle may not be enough. This wine was so good the bottle went very fast and we ended up ordering an extra glass each! Ergo Tempranillo is an excellent choice for Rioja lovers and is available in stores for under $14. If you are in the NYC area and are looking for a great place for date night or a fun place to go with a group of friends I highly recommend Ventanas.