The Gómez Cruzado winery dates back to 1886 when Angel Gómez de Arteche started to produce and bottle his own wine in Haro, at the very heart of Rioja Alta. This was in the day when the wine trade between Rioja and France passed along the Tudela-Bilbao line, and the key Rioja wineries were located around the station of Haro. The winery sits just 100m from the station to this day. Subsequently bought by Angel and Jesus Gomez Cruzado in 1916, and more recently by the Baños family, David González (winemaker) and Juan Antonio Leza (viticulturalist) now head up the winemaking team. They have been working with Gomez Cruzado for over 10 years, crafting wines from vineyards of old bush vines in the most elevated areas of Rioja Alta and Alavesa. They source from almost a hundred different plots across 3 distinct regions: Alto Najerilla, Bajo Najerilla and Sierra Cantabria. Sierra Cantabria (Rioja Alta and Alavesa): Vines grow in poor, white, chalky-clay soils, on sunny slopes at the highest part of the sierra (up to 750m altitude) - where the Mediterranean and Atlantic climates meet. The area produces wines with freshness and elegance. Bajo Najerilla (Rioja Alta): in the triangle formed by the villages of Uruñuela, Cenicero and Torremontalbo, where the Najerilla river flows into the River Ebro. Tempranillo vines grown in alluvial soils at an average altitude of 500m – in a warmer, more temperate continental climate with a notable Mediterranean influence. Wines have high maturity and excellent ageing capacity. Alto Najerilla (Rioja Alta): Garnacha vines over 80 years old, planted in ferrous clay soil at around 750m altitude, on north-facing slopes near the Sierra de la Demanda. The continental climate confers strong fruitiness and marked acidity on the resulting wines.
Gomez Cruzado Cerro Las Cuevas Rioja (Atlantic Tempranillo) 2019
One of Gomez Cruzado’s ‘Terroir Selection’ – Cerro Las Cuevas is an expression of the climate of northern Rioja Alavesa. Here the white clay and limestone soils, high altitude, and colder and wetter climate influenced by the Atlantic produces a wine with great structure and concentration.
Grapes are sourced from vineyards in Ollauri – areas known as ‘Las Laderas’ and ‘Calitrancos’, where vines date back 90 years and grow on a steeply sloping narrow plot. The main variety grown in Tempranillo, but also Graciano, Mazuelo and Garnacha. Soils are limestone with pebbles on the surface in Las Laderas, and more sandy at Calitrancos. The grapes are hand-picked into 15Kg crates, and are then sorted further at the winery. Fermentation is in an open stainless steel tank using indigenous yeast, and with a gentle plunging of the cap to extract tannins from the skin. Malolactic fermentation and maturation in French oak foudres.