THE VINEYARD CUBILLAS - The Viña Cubillo wine comes from the vineyard “Cubillas”, which is 2 miles away from the winery. Its height is 1,348 feet above sea level and the vines have an average age of 40 years. The soil is from the terciaria age, composed of clay and limestone. The surface is 59 acres: Tempranillo, Garnacho, Mazuelo, and Graciano. Historically, the wines from that vineyard were called “Special Harvest”.
Region/Sub-Region: Spain, Rioja, Rioja Alta.
Grapes: 65% Tempranillo, 25% Garnacho, 10% Graciano, and Mazuelo.
Soil: Clay and Limestone.
Harvest: End September-early October, all done by hand, cutting with a curved knife "corquete", prevents the grape breaking causing fermentation prematurely. Bunches are placed in conical wood containers made at the R. López de Heredia cooperage.
Vinification: Hoppers de-stem bunches and gently break skins. Spontaneous fermentation in large 25,000L vats.
Aging: 3 years in 225L American oak barrels handmade by the López de Heredia coopers, racked twice per year and at least 3 years in bottle before released.
Nose: Terrific nose of leather, black cherry, dried raspberries and spice.
Taste: Full palate and complex development, well balanced with firm tannins, red black fruits with earthy undernotes.
Gastronomy: All kinds of meats and grilled fish, leg of lamb stuffed with rosemary and garlic, cured meats, anchovies and fatty fish.
Color: Dark deep ruby with garnet rim.
Talking About the Wines:
-A View from the Cellar, March '23 gave 91 points to 2014 Viña Cubillo Crianza. “The 2014 Viña Cubillo “Crianza” from López de Heredia is a beautiful wine on both the nose and palate. The cépages of the bottling this year is sixty-five percent tempranillo, twenty-five percent garnacha and ten percent graciano and mazuelo. The wine is given fully three years aging in two hundred twenty-five liter American oak casks and then a further three years of bottle aging in the cellars, so the 2014 is the new release! The bouquet wafts from the glass in a stylish and complex blend of raspberries, smoked meats, cloves, cigar wrapper, a fine base of soil, a touch of celery seed and a discreet framing of spicy oak. On the palate the wine is bright, full-bodied and nicely transparent in personality, with a good core, moderate tannins, tangy acids and good length and grip on the complex and well-balanced finish. This is a lovely wine that is starting to drink nicely, but still has a bit of backend tannin and is probably five to seven years away from starting to get that velvety palate impression that López de Heredia is so famous for.”
-Dr. Owen Bargreen, Sept '22 gave 92 points to 2013 Viña Cubillo Crianza.
“The gorgeous 2013 ‘Vina Cubillo’ was stored in handmade 225L American oak barrels for three years before bottling and then sat for an additional three years. A blend of mostly Tempranillo (65%) with 25% Garnacho and equal parts Graciano and Mazuelo, this shows tart cranberry and pomegranate fruit flavors, with blood orange rind, cigar ash and toasty oak notes. Elegant and polished, enjoy now and over the next ten years.”
-International Wine Report, Aug '22 gave 92 points to 2013 Viña Cubillo Crianza. “The 2013 Viña Cubillo Rioja opens to aromas of tart cherries, raspberries, spices, wild herbs, orange peel, licorice and hints of leather. On the palate this medium-bodied Rioja is structured with fine tannins and displays a notable sense of vibrancy that persists through finish. This is accessible now but should also continue to drink nicely with some additional bottle age.”
-Wine Advocate, Aug '22 gave 92+ points to 2013 Viña Cubillo Crianza. “2013 was a very tough vintage when they had to discard up to 100,000 kilograms of grapes and production of most of the wines was lower, it’s also the year when their father died, and they were very encouraged to make very good wines. The 2013 Viña Cubillo Tinto Crianza is the entry-level red from that year, the cooler the shortlist of 2013, 2014 and 2015 I tasted next to each other. The wine is more austere even within the style they say is their wine for by-the-glass market. It’s classical and developed with a polished palate after three years in barrel. It overdelivers for the conditions of the year.”