I received this appealing wine as a sample from the lovely Li Valentine of The Wining Hour. This wine from Rioja is a blend of 90% Tempranillo and 10% Graciano. The grapes come from vineyards in Briones, Rioja Alta. On average the vines are 35 years old on average and grow on chalky-clay soils. The wine spends 24 months in new and second year barrels made with French and American oak. The wine then spends several more months in French oak vats before being bottled and laid down for the next 24 months. While the use of oak clearly came through on the palate, I wasn’t put off by it. I thought the wine was silky and sexy, words that Spanish wines often bring to mind. Vivanco also created a wine culture museum a concept that I love. Apparently the bottle shape comes from one that is in the museum. Another aspect of this winery that really delights me is their attention to children. As the mother of a small child, when I travel to a wine region with him, its not automatic that children are welcome to visit. Rafael Vivanco Sáenz is the winemaker – the third generation of the family. I can’t wait to visit Rioja and Vivanco with my son now after having looked at how many activities they have thought of. I hope other wineries and regions take note.
One of my resolutions in 2019 is to write everyday on this blog. I want to write about all of the wines I have tasted and the samples I have received and finish two letters in my Italian indigenous varieties series as well as finish posts from all of my press trips and events I have been invited to. A tall order but I am going to attempt it.