The Tempranillo grapes come from the 30-year-old La Cuesta and Montecillo vineyards, located in Fuenmayor y Cenicero. For the first time in the blend of this brand, the Garnacha comes from La Pedriza vineyard in Tudelilla (Rioja Baja) at an altitude of 550 m above sea level. This 67 hectare property offers unbeatable conditions for growing this variety. Its nutrient-poor soil, covered with boulders, results in low grape yields (less than 5000 kg/ha) and significant varietal typicity, rich in aromas, with a pleasant, elegant structure.
One of the best for La Rioja Alta SA in recent years. The reasons why: very favourable weather, vines in excellent condition, both in terms of development and health-wise, and very moderate production due to some shatter during flowering. So, we enjoyed ver loose, medium-sized clusters with smaller berries than in previous years. This was particularly the case with the Garnacha in finca La Pedriza, which produced highly aromatic wines thanks to greater varietal expression from this terroir. The official vintage rating was Excellent.
80% Tempranillo, 20% Garnacha
The selected wines were put in barrels to start ageing separately in March 2011 : the Tempranillo for 36 months in American oak barrels averaging 4 years in age and the Garnacha for 30 months in American oak barrels with two and three wines. The final blend took place after barrel ageing was completed. The wine was bottled in 2015.
In 1895, five enterprising families in Rioja Alta came together to form a company which would take local Spanish winemaking to an altogether higher level. Responding to the phylloxera crisis in Bordeaux, the families realised that, by banding together, they could offer a commercially viable way of filling the gap in supply of complex, well-structured red wines, based at a bodega in Haro’s Barrio de la Estación - the station quarter, which made export by rail fast and efficient.
Over the following decades, the Sociedad Vinícola de La Rioja Alta established and maintained the characteristics of what have become classic Riojas- particularly bright fruit and long oak ageing. Gradually, the company took control of every aspect of winemaking, not only controlling the winemaking and maturation but acquiring their own cooperage and bottling facility and, by the 1970s, instead of buying the bulk of their grapes from small growers, vinifying their own fruit.
The ideal partner for roasted and grilled meats, barbecues, poultry and game, Iberian ham and sausages, as well as semi-cured cheeses.
In the press
"Dried cherries, cedar, sandalwood, tar, treacle tart, cinnamon and vanilla. Medium body, fine-grained and very silky tannins for a wine of almost 10 years of age, bright and transparent acidity and a long, very spicy finish. Like going back in time and touching an ornate tapestry. The texture is mesmerizing." 96 points, James Suckling
"2010 was a great vintage in Rioja in general and seems to be exceptional here, with a 2010 Viña Ardanza Selección Especial (what used to be Reserva Especial) that can challenge any of the recent vintages and hopefully can develop in bottle to reach the heights of years like 1973 or 1964. The wine is expressive, aromatic, very elegant and clean, with classical Rioja aromas of long aging in barrel and slow oxidation through the years in wood. The palate is polished and sleek but shows plenty of energy, with very fine, mostly resolved tannins and very good harmony and persistence. There is great complexity, and you could start smelling spice and smoke to move to earthy tones, hints of beef blood, cherries in liqueur, curry, diesel, old furniture and forest floor. A great Viña Ardanza!”. 95 points, Luis Gutierrez, Wine Advocate