Lopez de Heredia Rioja Vina Bosconia Reserva 2009
About 75% Tempranillo the rest Mazuelo and Graciano. 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. López de Heredia's two grand wines appear under two different labels, Tondonia and Bosconia, each named for a vineyard the family purchased nearly a century ago. The Viña Bosconia wines are sourced from a vineyard called El Bosque. Situated next to the river Ebro at an altitude of 465m, it is one kilometer away from the winery. Vines are planted on the south-facing foothills of the Sierra Cantabria range, providing them with the perfect conditions for ripening. The soil is a mixture of clay and limestone, and the average age of the vines is 40 years. In general, Viña Bosconia wines are elegant but full-bodied; have a deep color and good structure, and are wines with great complexity and expression. This Reserva is a superb red wine that is of a style that is going extinct is exactly what Lopez de Heredia is all about. Tradition.