Bodegas Ontañón is a 5th generation family-owned and run winery in Rioja Baja (now Rioja Oriental). Here Raquel, Rubén and Maria Pérez Cuevas continue their father Gabriel's work to develop Bodegas Ontañón into one of the most highly-regarded wineries in Rioja. Ontañón has vast swathes of vineyard in this part of Rioja. Whilst wine production in the region is typically very dependent on contracts with grape growers, the Pérez Cuevas family has seen fit to invest heavily in the purchase of its own land and vines. Its 250ha is a testament to the importance it places on controlling grape quality.The family's vineyards sit high in the Sierra Yerga mountains in the prestigious region surrounding Quel, defying misconceptions that Rioja Baja is one of the lesser sub-regions within Rioja. Many of their vineyards are actually planted at altitudes on a par with, or above, those in Rioja Alta and Alavesa; (La Pasada is their highest vineyard at 800m above sea level, planted in 1979 it is used for Reserva and Gran Reserva wines). The hot and dry Mediterranean climate allows for consistent ripening of the grapes with little disease and this has enabled them to pursue organic production across 57 hectares of vines.
Bodegas Ontanon Rioja Reserva 2015
Ontanon’s Reservas are only produced in years of exceptional quality – and from the most select vineyards. The Tempranillo (95%) is sourced from La Pasada, and the Graciano (5%) from La Montesa vineyard.After a long maceration the wine spends 12 months in 60% American and 40% French oak (both used and new), followed by 24 months in bottle.
Appealing aromas of cedar, strawberry, pepper and quince. The palate has masses of fresh fruit with hints of cinnamon and intense vanilla notes. After 24 months in wood and a longer bottle aging this exhibits an evolved and savoury character to broaden the fruits appeal.