This is a wine that intentionally refers to a style of farming and winemaking that has fallen out of fashion in Rioja – difficult and painstaking work that results in incredibly fresh, elegant wines. Aged far longer than most crianzas, La Antigua has an elegance and silky texture unusual for this age statement of Rioja.
2012 92JS; 2012 91 VM; 2011 91JS; 2010 91IWC
70% Tempranillo, 20% Graciano, 10% Garnacha. Vines planted from 1940 to 1955. Tended in limestone and sandy soil at 568 m (1,865 ft) elevation.
VINIFICATION AND AGEING:
24 months in stainless steel tanks plus 24 months in 60% French and 40% American oak barrels
Brilliant ruby. Lively aromas of fresh, spice-tinged red and dark berries and candied flowers are complemented by suggestions of vanilla and woodsmoke. Juicy and energetic on the palate, offering appealingly sweet black raspberry and rose pastille flavors that deepen slowly as the wine opens up. Gentle, slow-building tannins shape a smooth, persistent finish that strongly echoes the floral note. -- Josh Raynolds.