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R Lopez de Heredia Vina Tondonia Rioja Blanco Gran Reserva 1991 R Lopez de Heredia Vina Tondonia Rioja Blanco Gran Reserva 1991

I know it's hard to believe but this is the current Gran Reserva white wine from R. Lopez de Heredia Viña Tondonia, Composed of mainly old vine Viura with roughly 10% old vine Malvasia this wine is fermented in decades old, huge oak "tinas" before being racked to old American oak barrels and aged for years prior to bottling, at which point it ages some more. They are in no rush to make this wine, just as you should be in no hurry to drink it, although as it's made in such tiny quantities, you should hurry up and buy some!

93 Points from Robert Parker

Don Rafael López de Heredia y Landeta founded Viña Tondonia in the years 1913-14. Tondonia was to become the bodega´s most famous vineyard and product. Viña Tondonia is a beautiful vineyard of over 100 hectares, situated on the right bank of the river Ebro, where the most typical Rioja wines are grown.

The Tondonia vineyard has to be is the most spectacular in Haro. Situated in a shell-like depression next to the River Ebro which serves as a border with Rioja Alavesa (the part of the Rioja appellation region belonging to the Basque Country), it is characterised by poplar trees. The soil is alluvial clay with a high proportion of limestone. The vineyards, cared for with enthusiasm and love, cover a total area of 170 hectares and produce an average annual yield of some 800,000 kg of grapes. Grapes from Viña Tondonia are always used in making the highest quality wines. The first "Reserva" was bottled by the founder as long ago as 1890.

90% Viura, 10% Malvasia

The harvest started on the 14th October.

The grapes were crushed and separated from the skins and then underwent fermentation in large (60hl) oak vats using wild yeast.

The wine was then racked and aged in small American oak barriques for 10 years, being racked twice per year and fined with fresh egg whites.

After the barrel aging the wines where then bottled unfiltered and spend a further 6 year period in bottle before release.

The Vina Tondonia Blanco Gran Reserva 1991 has a deep natural gold colour, showing distinct signs of development. The nose if deeply developed but very persistent with notes of lemon peel, almond and jasmine. The palate is surprisingly crisp and dry at first and then sweet topical and citrus fruits come though along with the aged notes of smoke and nuts. An extremely complex wine.

CLOSURE:    Cork

ALCOHOL:    12% (9 units of alcohol)

Per Bottle 57.95


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