Pretium Rioja Blanco 2018
WineSpark Price €20.37
One of the sneaky big sellers of the first year of WineSpark was white Rioja. So I was overjoyed when I came across this gem at the Barcelona wine fair.
It’s made by the extremely talented Berta Valgañon, in the far northwest corner of Rioja.
This is a wild and remote place - with unpredictable weather. In August it gets as low as 2°C at night, with extremely hot days. This variation in day/night temperature gives the grapes a real intensity of flavour and freshness.
Berta hand-picks the grapes from a single vineyard plot, planted by her great-grandfather 120 years ago. It’s a field blend of 45% Viura, 45% Malvasia and 10% Calagraño. It’s aged in old oak barrels for 11 months, 6 of which is on its lees.
The wine ends up distinctly fresh and fruity, with a lovely subtle smoky and nutty nose from the oak. On the palate it’s full and intense, with a satisfyingly long saline finish.
If you love white Burgundy but you’re after something a bit different, give this a try. And 93 points from Tim Atkin MW - high praise indeed.
|Grape(s)||45% Viura, 45% Malvasía of Rioja and 10% Calagraño|
|Region of origin||Rioja|
|Months in Oak||11|
|Type of Oak||French oak, 500 litres|
|Allergens (e.g. does it contain Milk, Egg, Fish, Nuts)||None|
|Average age of vines||120 years|
|Average altitude of vines (m)||570m|
|Soil type(s)||Loam and limestone soil|
|Is this wine organic?||Yes|
|Suitable for vegans?||Yes|
|Ageing potential||5 years|
|Ideal drinking window||2021 - 2026|
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