Visually it’s striking, with an old gold hue. On the nose it’s intense with aromas of white flowers which then give way to notes of brioche, vanilla, peaches, and fruit salad. After oxygenation, the balsamic notes mellow out and become more mineral with hints of fresh peat amongst a whole array of fabulous natural aromas. On the palate, it’s full and dense with bright acidity which gives it greater length and a silky mouthfeel. Its luxuriousness defies description.
Founded in the 1970s by Don Gregorio Martinez, a well known Rioja entrepreneur, he began acquiring plots of land around Sorzano, his wife’s home town. Now the estate covers 150 hectares spanning the towns of Nalda, Sorzano, and Entrena, of which 32 hectares are planted vineyards.
Currently managed by his descendants, the project changed dramatically after the arrival of winemaker Ricardo Cantera in 2009. They used to sell grapes to other wineries and make a classic range of wines based on the Crianza, Reserva and Gran Reserva categories but now they have started making a new range of fresh reds and whites. Cantera has patented an energy-saving system that uses the carbon dioxide that is naturally generated during fermentation to break the cap from the inside of the vat through a mushroom-shaped device that spews the wine as if it were a volcano. Another advantage of this system is the ability to work with very low quantities of sulfites.
The grape varieties grown on the estate are Tempranillo, Mazuelo, and Viura, all of which are native to Spain.
Ratings & Reviews
95 points - Tim Atkin
"Sourced from a north-facing slope at 700 metres back in 1985, when doing so was a riskier business than it is today because of climate change, this pure Viura is one of Rioja's most distinguished and age-worthy whites. Complex, waxy and toasty, with notes of umami and wild mushroom and thrilling, acidity."
– Tim Atkin