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La Rioja valley from the Sierra Cantabrian mountains, May 2007

 

Rioja

Over the past 20 years, it sometimes seemed that the emergence of new and interesting grape growing areas in Spain would relegate Rioja to a secondary role. Paradoxically, this trend has underlined the great potential of the area, as it has refocused attention on this historic region.

There is no doubt that Rioja is one of the most interesting appellations in our country. Since the 18th century, Rioja has benefited from the effort and dedication of intelligent, ground-breaking people such as Quintano, Ortiz de Zarate, Hurtado de Amezaga, Paternina and Manso de Zúñiga. Thanks to their endeavours, the region attained a new level of quality. It should also be remembered that Rioja was the origin of one of the most sophisticated projects in Spanish viticulture: the “Médoc Alavés”, the true start of the modernization of Rioja, back in 1860.
  Ancient viticultural traditions - entire villages have been dedicated to vine and wine culture for centuries - have left a rich heritage, with a great variety of landscapes, plots, varieties and cultivation techniques. The best plots in the best villages, invariably grown as bush vines, turned out to be the best guarantee of future quality.

The company’s work in Rioja is based on the search for the soul of the region, returning to the villages where a few special plots express themselves in a single wine. Lanciego is a village in the foothills of the Sierra de Cantabria mountains, reflecting better the contrasting contributions of the Mediterranean and the Atlantic influences. Olive trees often surround the vines that are protected by the mountains, while beech forests cover the sierra, reflecting the clash of climates. The partners’ Rioja is as a blend of native grape varieties, grown on the best soils and subject to the best viticulture. Their wine is allowed to express its qualities thanks to simple, but scientifically-grounded winemaking. 

 

 

Winery under construction, Lanciego, La Rioja, May 2007

 

View of Las Beatas, La Rioja, May 2007

 


Restoration of Las Beatas terraces, May 2007

 

“Guarda Viñas” hut and olive trees, Lanciego, May 2007

 

Veriquete vineyard, Lanciego, May 2007

 


Benicio vineyard, Lanciego, May 2007

 

Soil Strata, La Rioja, May 2007

 

View from the winery, Lanciego, May 2007

 


Foehn effect, Sierra Cantabria, May 2007

 

Mantible, Assa, May 2007

 

Hommage to the tractor, Cenicero, May 2007