Lopez de Heredia are a legendary Spanish winery in Rioja, Spain. They make wines which are often released much older than other estates, such as this Reserva 2009 (most Reservas on the market now are 2015 or 2016). The wines are never heavy, but focus on delicacy, freshness, aroma and lingering flavour. It’s therefore easy to underestimate them at the start, but as you enjoy them over an evening, the wines mellow, and reveal layers and layers of fruit, spice, earth and savoury aromas and flavours.
Rioja is in Northern Spain, close to Bilbao and San Sebastian. Maria Lopez de Heredia runs the estate, and they are famous for their long-aged wines such as their Gravonia white Rioja and Tondonia red Rioja. The estate was founded in the 1800s and is in Haro, in the heart of the Rioja region. It makes a great visit from Bilbao if you are travelling in the area, as the wine is great, the winery is beautiful and there are plenty of good restaurants near by!
Made predominantly from the Tempranillo grape variety, the main grape of Rioja giving lovely red fruit character when the wine is young. Here, with over ten years of age, the wine shows notes of earth, spice and delicate cherry fruit. It’s fresh and medium-bodied, with moderate alcohol. With a subtle oak influence, this is a complex but superbly enjoyable wine, with a long finish and flavours that last and last. Great with a plain red meat or grilled vegetable dish. Better decanted an hour before serving. Drink now or keep till 2026. 13% ABV.