Rioja Wine and Tapas at Union Station

Take a jaunt to Spain, via downtown LA, at Union Station.

VISIT SPAIN VIA UNION STATION: While we might wish, in our daydreams, that we could board some sort of magical train, with the sort of rail cars found in a novel, and speed to Spain from downtown LA, all in a matter of minutes, such futuristic travel hasn't yet been invented. But, on occasion, Spain will arrive in California, with a caboodle of deep and complex flavors, and it will do so at, of all places, a train station. But not just any train station, of course; the Rioja Wine & Tapas Festival is setting up sippable, suppable shop at our much-photographed, movie-celebrated Union Station on Saturday, May 21. What do we mean by "sippable"? We mean that...

NEARLY 200 WINES... "ranging from Blancos to Rosados to Gran Reservas" will be lined up for oenophiles to try. And what do we mean by "suppable"? Look to the on-site jamón bar, which will boast a bevy of hams that will summon days spent eating your way around northern Spain. Local SoCal chefs, about 30 of them, will complement the ham-tasty offerings with a host of tapas, so prepare for tastes redolent of olive and garlic and new potatoes and red peppers and cumin and spice. As for gaining more knowledge in the Rioja-producing end of the wine world? Join a seminar that will delve deeper into this storied libation.

TICKETS... for the afternoon affair are $68.95. It's rather less than a plane ticket to Rioja, though, we can imagine, and even predict, that after your ham and tapas and vino, you'll start planning your plane (not train) trip to the province soon.

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