R. Lopez de Heredia Viña Tondonia Rioja DOCa Reserva 2011

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R. Lopez de Heredia Viña Tondonia Rioja DOCa Reserva 2011
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Country Spain
Region Rioja
Appellation/Sub-Region Rioja DOCa Reserva
Grapes Tempranillo, Garnacha, Graciano, Mazuelo
Vineyard/Cellar Practices Conventional

This estate is the epitome of traditional, with not many changes being made in the winemaking procedures for the last 100 years (they have been producing for more than 145). While many wineries have experimented and converted to using new oak barrels and shorter aging before release, Lopez de Heredia has resisted any such urge. While those more modern wines are often wonderful in their own right, the wines of Lopez are more a window into a time that has passed us by. Bodegas would carefully age their wines to allow them to develop and mature gracefully. To this end, in the mid-1600’s, the mayor of the town of Logroño banned traffic from passing next to bodegas so that the vibrations wouldn’t damage the resting wines. Lopez continues this tradition, releasing wines sometimes decades old, because there is no true shortcut for time. Harvested from the Tondonia vineyard, this is a blend of 75% tempranillo, 15% garnacha and 10% graciano and mazuelo (aka carignan). The wine is matured in older French and American oak barrels that allow for slow development of flavor and texture.