Alegre Valganon 2018 Rioja Tinto DOCa

Alegre Valganon 2018 Rioja Tinto DOCa

Item Number: 14918

UPC: 8-437016438015

Country: Spain
Region: La Rioja
Sub Region: Rioja Alta
Appellation/AVA: Rioja DOCa
Estate Grown Wine: Yes
Vintage: 2018
Grape(s): 75% Tempranillo / 25% Garnacha
Type: Wine - Red
Bottle Size: 750 ml
Pack: 12
Closure: Cork
Alc by Vol(%): 14.1
Soil Type: Limetone-rich clay with sand.

Winemaking Notes: This is a blend of roughly 75% Tempranillo from Obarenes and 25% Garnacha from Cárdenas. The grapes are fermented primarily in wooden vats using indigenous yeast. While once the norm, whole-cluster winemaking is today nearly unheard-of in Rioja. Oscar and Eva are restoring that tradition, inspired by how the best Northern Rhône traditionalists routinely get greater purity and expressiveness by including ripe stems. This wine sees at least 25% whole bunches and is given a 30+ day maceration. The wine is then aged in a mix of used French barriques and demi-muid for 18 months. The result is a blend of vivid fruit and intense mouthfeel uncommon in Rioja today. The beautiful 2018 is only the third Alegre Valgañón Tinto to be available in the U.S. It offers an outstanding wine-drinking experience, yet at a bargain price.

Winemaker Notes from Oscar: "We are not trying to make the greatest wine in Rioja. We only want to make a true wine—a wine that shows off our land, and all the knowledge that we’ve inherited from earlier generations.”

Vineyard Notes: Oscar and Eva are blessed with superb sites—all lying just west of Haro, in the shadow of the Obarenes Mountains. These high-elevation sites are key to quality of their fruit, but the couple’s investment in serious, labor-intensive viticulture is what made their 2018 reds so special. 2018 was a cooler year with ample rainfall, and commercial viticulture at many estates led to widespread disease pressure and to under-ripe fruit. However, for committed growers who managed their vines carefully, the long hang-time afforded by 2018 also allowed for development of fully ripe skins and intense aromatics, all balanced with supple tannins and bright acidity. Through their holistic viticulture and ancient winemaking methods, Oscar and Eva have captured the potential of 2018 in a way that is not only sumptuous to drink; it offers something unique in today’s Rioja landscape.

Reviews

  • The Wine Advocate
    Rating: 93 (10/30/2020)

    I see the effect of the Garnacha very clear in this vintage, as it has some aromatic notes—flowers and red fruit, a touch of iodine and something mineral (think wet stones)—that are common with the Garnacha bottling and also the new single-vineyard Carra Sto Domingo. The palate is medium-bodied, there is some tannin, softened by the Garnacha, and it's juicy and round and finishes with a faint bitter twist. It follows the line of the 2016, perhaps a little fresher/less oxidative. Both this and the Blanco clearly overdeliver.