100% Viura. While a winemaking revolution has raged around them, a handful of bodegas have stayed true to the traditions that made Rioja famous. Perhaps the best known of these in the United States is López de Heredia. Little about López de Heredia has changed in the more than 130 years since its founding. It occupies the same historic cellars and unlike most of their competitors, which are now owned by outside investors, López de Heredia is owned—and every detail of its operation is handled—by the family who founded it. Most Rioja wineries buy grapes from dozens of small growers; but not López de Heredia. They own every inch of the vineyards that supply their wines. Only natural yeasts are used and there is no filtration. They still age their greatest wines in wood for six to eight years and even make their own barrels. The bodega is now in the capable hands of the family’s youngest generation—Maria José and Mercedes. Yet, still, nothing changes. In fact, these two are philosophically committed to the winery’s traditions as their parents and grandparents were before them. Viña Gravonia comes from the 24-ha Viña Zaconia vineyard. It’s right by the winery on the banks of the River Ebro in Haro and was bought by the great-grandfather of sisters Mercedes and María José López de Heredia. Vines are on average 30–40 years old and planted on poor, gravelly, south-facing calcareous-clay slopes with very good drainage. The character of this wine, however, is as much about the winemaking – in particular, the fermentation in centenarian oak vats and four years’ aging in 8- to 10-year-old American oak barrels – as it is about the vineyard. A superb white wine that is of a style that is going extinct is exactly what Lopez de Heredia is all about. Tradition.