- Tempranillo / Garnacha / Graciano
- NOW - 2026
- Case size
Goedhuis, April 2021
Contino sits on one of the best terroirs in Rioja Alavesa. This prestigious site makes their Reserva 2016 exceptional value. Your palate is caressed with silky fresh plump dark berries, bursting with vibrant flavours. Juicy ripe blueberries, creamy cassis, dark hedgerow blackberry, prunes, dried rose, fresh tobacco and herbs. This 2016 has a lovely depth of flavours, mixed with sweet balsamic and warming spices laced with creamy vanilla, a nod to the beautifully integrated oak. The 2016 has lots of elegance and great balance with a sumptuous and long finish. This should be a staple house wine for everyone, its class and value make it stand out in a crowd and it’s delicious to drink now. Drink now - 2026+
CVNE’s Contino is one of Rioja’s flagship wineries and is widely regarded as one of the greatest. Founded in the 16th Century it sits on one of the best terroirs in Rioja Alavesa and since 1973 it has been pioneering single estate Riojas from specific plots on the property. This innovation has produced some outstanding results, the wines have received top awards and glowing reviews from the critics.
By the far the best known of Spain's wine regions is Rioja, which takes its name from the rio(river) Oja, a tributary of the river Ebro. Lying in the north of the country, along the Ebro valley, the area is sheltered from rain-bearing Atlantic winds by the dramatic Sierra de Cantabria to the north and west. The hilly vineyards are interspersed with orchards, poplars and eucalyptus trees. Rioja is further divided into three sub-regions - Rioja Alta, Rioja Alavesa and Rioja Baja. The first two are best regarded, with vines planted on cool slopes with clay and limestone soils. The permitted grape varieties for Rioja are tempranillo, which is grown extensively in Rioja Alta and Alavesa and will form the backbone of all the best wines, garnacha, widespread in Rioja Baja and used to add body to the blend, and mazuelo (carignan) and graciano, both grown in miniscule proportions. The key to understanding Rioja is the technique used to mature the wine. Unlike most other areas of Europe, American oak barrels are used which give the wines their characteristic soft vanilla, almost coconuty flavour. Historically the wines were aged for periods far longer than legally required, until all the fruit character had died down and the end result was a light, tawny-coloured wine dominated by oak flavours. Although there are still supporters of this classic style, far more producers are making wines in a more modern way, allowing the dark berry fruit flavours to burst through balanced by a more judicious use of oak ageing and often opting for French oak now.