2009 Remelluri Rioja La Granja Remelluri Gran Reserva

Year: 2009
Appellation: Rioja
Country: Spain
Wine Advocate: 93
Red Wine
Alcohol by Volume: 14.5%
Price :
$79.95

VERY RARE, VERY EXPENSIVE, VERY VERY GOOD!!

"Last year I tasted the Reserva and it's now time for the 2009 Granja Remelluri Gran Reserva, which will be released worldwide around September (and therefore the price is approximate).This is a category they had not produced since 2005 and only bottled in exceptional vintages (1989, 1990, 1994, 1996, 1999, 2005). In their mountain vineyards (500 to 800 meters altitude), the 2009 season saw a cold and long winter with enough snow that provided enough water for a warm summer. It's a blend of the traditional Rioja grapes, Tempranillo, Garnacha, Graciano and the whites Viura and Malvasía. As in the past, all red wines contained a more or less small amount of white grapes and despite being considered modern when their first released their wines, today they are as classical as it gets. The wine fermented with indigenous yeasts in a combination of small stainless-steel and oak vats then matured in French oak barrels of different sizes and ages for about 17 months. It is a ripe and well-oaked red, with plenty of spice and a medium to full-bodied palate and, while approachable, it should improve in bottle. I'd wait at least one year before pulling the cork, at which time the oak will probably be better integrated. This vintage was not fully produced by Telmo, so it's kind of a transition wine where you still find a bit too much new oak. From 2010 onward this wine changes, it should be produced every year and have a significant percentage of Garnacha and less new oak, perhaps after aging in large barrels. 20,000 bottles produced.

I visited the historical property of Remelluri, an estate On the outskirts of the village of Labastida in Álava. It is the source of one of the first modern Rioja wines created by Jaime Rodríguez and his wife Amaya Hernandorena in 1968. The full name of the company is Granja Nuestra Señora de Remelluri, Farm of Our Lady of Remelluri, as it had been a small settlement created in the 10th century. They have the remaining of a wine lagar and a necropolis from those early years. The estate was later turned in to a monastical farm by Jerónimo monks in the fourteenth century. After some changes in ownership, the property was finally purchased by the Rodríguez family in 1967 when it had 20 hectares of vineyards. The land under vine today is 108 hectares, and the Rodríguez family, whose scion Telmo Rodríguez is now back at the helm after creating his own company, are behind one of the first château-style wines in Spain. I could see the changes by Telmo and the new team (winemaker Pablo Eguzkiza in back), but it' still work in progress. The best is yet to come." (WA)

Winery Notes:
Sourced from our oldest plots, all of the grapes for our Gran Reserva were hand selected in the vineyard and transported in 20kg boxes.

Vinification:
The wine was fermented with indigenous yeasts in stainless steel tanks and 5000L wooden vats. It was then aged for 27 months in a combinations of 2 to 3 year old French and American oak.

Tasting Notes:
Spice box of aromas reminiscent of tobacco, sandalwood and pencil lead. The palate is grand and gains presence with aeration. Good length and great finesse.