About Bodegas Amézola de la Mora : Established in the mid-19th Century, is one of Rioja’s oldest and finest wine estates. Restored in the early 1980s by brothers Iñigo and Javier Amézola, this estate is extremely unusual (for Rioja) in that it owns all of its vines. The estate encompasses 60 ha of mature vines overlooking the confluence of the Najerilla and Ebro Rivers in the heart of Rioja Alta.
Following the tragic death of their winemaker father, Iñigo’s daughters María and Cristina have guided the property, capably assisted by winemaking consultant Georges Pauli, who served previously as head enologist at Château Gruaud-Larose and other fine French estates. At the time the sisters took over the winery they were the youngest wine-producers in Rioja.
Despite their youth, their enthusiasm and high diligence to producing wines of the highest quality have since earned them huge respect amongst their peers and wine aficionados. The prestigious and influential wine critic Robert M. Parker, recently classified Rioja’s Iñigo Amézola (92pts) and Viña Amézola (90pts) as “outstanding”.
winemaking : Iñigo Blanco Reserva is 100% Viura, which comes from the careful selection of the Pajarcillos farm, located in Torremontalbo, next to the course of the Najerilla river (La Rioja). Harvested by hand in 15 kg boxes, with selection on the table upon arrival at the winery, before de-stemming and crushing. The set of juice, skin, pulp and seeds is led to stainless steel tanks by means of special pumps, which transport the grapes without crushing them, and start fermentation at a temperature between 28ºC and 30ºC, with two pump-overs per day so that the wine properly oxygenated. Subsequently, the alcoholic fermentation takes place, naturally, thanks to natural lactic acid bacteria also coming from the wine and the strains. Once the alcoholic fermentation has concluded, the wines are aged for 5 months in new French oak barrels, that provide the wine with greater harmony and complexity of flavours.
Description : An update to the classic oxidatively aged barrel fermented Viura wines of Rioja, the use of French oak and less oxidation marks this wine as departure from the traditional style. A powerful nose of nuts, green fruit and citrus bursts out of the glass, with a following palate of grilled green apple, toasted lemon rind, pears, cashew nut, white pepper and a note of marzipan and candied ginger. Sublime.
ABV : 14%
What the critics say : This impressive, all-Viura white comes from Amézola’s Finca María Antonieta. Sourced from sandy soils close to the Ebro River, it’s fermented in new French oak but the wood is deftly folded into the wine. Rich, honeyed, leesy and textured, with subtle beeswax and lavender notes and amazing freshness, vitality and palate length. 94 Pts Tim Atkin