La Rioja Alta continues to be one of the benchmarks for traditionally-produced Rioja. Established in 1890 in the same spot where their headquarters sits today, their three brands, Alberdi, Arana, and Ardanza, are named after the founding families, all of which remain shareholders to this day. The company still maintains traditional Rioja winemaking practices while embracing many of the new technological advances. It is unusual for a great bodega of Rioja to own vineyards, but La Rioja Alta owns 900 acres from which they can source top-quality grapes, resulting in excellent fruit and richness throughout their wines. This is an outstanding, medium-high depth, dark-cherry red, very intense on the nose, with spicy aromas of black pepper, cloves, cinnamon and vanilla enveloping fine notes of red berries. The palate shows a pleasant structure, balanced acidity, and delicate, enveloping tannins and a broad finish, with a round, elegant aftertaste.
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