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WINERY PROFILE | Lopez de Heredia / Vina Tondonia

“Cropped from one highly acclaimed vintage, the 2001 Viña Tondonia Blanco Reserva was harvested between October 8 and 15, like in the old times. It was produced as always with 90% Viura and the rest Malvasía Riojana fermented in very old oak vats with natural yeasts and matured in well-seasoned oak barrels for six years. The white varieties are always planted in the stonier, whiter soils. There is an extra dimension of freshness in this 2001, with even some citric hints intermixed with yellow flowers and herbal tea notes. With time in the glass it keeps developing aromas and changing all the time; at one point it even smelled of “turrón,” the Spanish nougat produced with almonds and honey, perhaps bitter almonds. Hmmmm! This is approachable now and will keep in bottle. This is a great vintage for this wine. Given the financial effort to keep this wine for such a long time and the quality it delivers, this is very good value for money. 11,000 bottles were produced.

I knew I was in for a treat when I received the list of wines to taste from María José López de Heredia, as with my 16-month cycle of tastings, sometimes I get two vintages of the same wine, which is the case here with no less than five labels. Wines going from strength to strength in the more strict Riojan classicism. The annual production is 400,000 bottles, and that’s not enough to satisfy global demand. As it usually happens, I tasted through the collection of wines while María José López de Heredia didn’t stop talking about their history, Rioja, their family and everything in between. Great tasting and great wines. Congratulations!”

— Luis Gutierrez / eRobertParker.com

94/100 Points