Juan Carlos López de Lacalle, owner and winemaker of Artadi, is recognised as one of the greatest names in the business in Spain. The winery was once a co-operative of 13 growers who owned well-sited vineyards around the town of Laguardia in the Alavesa wine region of Rioja. Juan Carlos saw the potential of these wonderful vineyards and purchased the Bodega, immediately amending the philosophy and style of winemaking. The winemaking is modern with an emphasis upon fruit driven wines, characterised by the terroir of individual vineyard sites – a far cry from the philosophy of traditional Rioja producers. French oak is used, not American, allowing the principle variety, Tempranillo, eloquent natural expression.
What The Critics Say
92+/100 Wine Advocate, Luis Gutierrez
"The very young 2016 Viñas de Gaín needed a little bit of air to open up, so perhaps decanting it in advance is not a bad idea. It blends Tempranillo grapes from a number of vineyards in Laguardia and Elvillar, usually with grapes selected from younger vines, and it's produced in a similar way as the single-vineyard bottlings, meaning fermentation in open-top wooden vats with indigenous yeasts and aging in barrique until malolactic is completed. 2016 is a lighter year, with less tannic structure but more approachable and easy to drink young, a characteristic that is pretty obvious in this cuvée, with red rather than black fruit, with more tension and freshness. This is the most vibrant vintage I remember from this bottling. This is the first year that carries the organic-agriculture seal, even though they abandoned herbicides and systemic products in 2002 and have been working their vineyards organically since around 2008."
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