La Rioja Alta Gran Reserva 890 2010

Elegant and complex, sure to help you wine down at the end of the day.
Tempranillo (Aragonez, Tinta Fino, Tinta Roriz)
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Notes: Cherry Fig Dill Oaky Dried Fruit Tobacco

Body: Medium +

Dryness: Dry


Tannin: Medium +

Alcohol (%):

Origin: La Rioja, Spain

Maker: La Rioja Alta


  • Tempranillo (Aragonez, Tinta Fino, Tinta Roriz)

Fermentation: Heavy Wood

Awards: >95 pts


Asian Food Pairing: Mala lamb skewers, KBBQ

Western Food Pairing: Meat stew, chocolate desserts


La Rioja Alta Gran Reserva 890 2010

La Rioja Alta Gran Reserva 890 has a ruby red with an incipient brick rim. It has an intense and classic aroma with notes of cured leather, stewed plums and raisins with hints of tobacco, sweet spices, vanilla and dark chocolate. The mouthfeel is elegant, mature and complex with an outstanding structure and well-balanced acidity with silky tannins. Its classic Rioja bouquet stands out big, complex and round, with elegant finish. A Gran Reserva 890 with a magnificent present and a promising future.
This vintage was officially rated as excellent. After bud break at the normal time of the year, moderate, we;;-distributed spring rains led to proper canopy development, which lasted until fruit set, helping to balance production. September temperatures were moderate during the day and coola t night, allowing the grapes to acquire the typical traits of this part of Rioja.
95% Tempranillo and 2% Mazuelo from estate-owned vineyards in Briñas, Labastida and 3% Villalba Graciano from the Montecillo vineyard.
The selected clusters were picked manually into boxes that were transported to the winery in refrigerated vehicles. After gentle destemming and crushing, the wines underwent an unhurried fermentation. Subsequently, the best batches were put in barrels, where they were aged for 6 years with 10 traditional rackings. During this time, a new selection was carried out and only 199 barrels were in the final blend. These were bottled in March 2012. The wines has not been filtered in order to preserve all the aromatic components.

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The aromas to this are stunning with dried strawberry, stone and fresh mushroom. Full body and very tight with incredible depth and structure. It goes on for minutes. One of the greatest ever? The new 1964?

Shimmering garnet. Aromas of dried cherry, potpourri, vanilla, cigar box and exotic spices; a smoky mineral quality builds in the glass. Sweet, concentrated and seamless on the palate, offering cherry compote, red currant and rose pastille flavors that put on weight and pick up a spicy nuance on the back half. Conveys a suave blend of power and delicacy and closes sweet and gently tannic, with superb persistence and an echo of candied flowers and red fruits. This bottling and the 2001 are the only Selección Especial versions of the 890 Gran Reserva that have been produced by La Rioja Alta.

I tasted the 2005 Gran Reserva 890 again, and I liked it better this time than in my previous review, even if I normally like the Gran Reserva 904 better than this bottling, as I find it better balanced. I tend to feel less energy in this wine, as it spends a very long time in barrel, six years in this case. 2005 was an excellent vintage, and they implemented some improvements in the harvest, introducing 350-kilo boxes and refrigerated transport to the winery, which they think provides better grapes and potentially better quality of the wines. The palate is medium-bodied, the tannins have mostly melted, and it has lively acidity that lift the wine up. This is a very classical and polished Rioja. 57,000 bottles produced. It was bottled in March 2012.
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 - Best Rioja 2022