THE VINEYARD TONDONIA - Don Rafael López de Heredia acquired Viña Tondonia from a group of clergies in 1913. The Tondonia vineyard is a beautiful vineyard of over 247 acres, 1,600 feet above sea level, situated on the right bank of the Ebro River in Rioja Alta. The soil is Alluvial clay with a high concentration of Limestone. There are 4 varieties of red grapes planted in this vineyard: Tempranillo, Mazuelo, Graciano, and Garnacho. The vineyard has a few acres of white grapes (Viura and Malvasia).
Region/Sub- Region: Spain, Rioja, Rioja Alta.
Grapes: 30% Tempranillo, 60% Garnacho, and 10% Viura.
Soil: Alluvial clay and Limestone.
Harvest: End September-early October, all done by hand, cutting with a curved knife "corquete", prevents the grape from 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 releasing the must and skin contact soaking period. Must is transferred to 25,000L vats where spontaneous fermentation takes place.
Aging: 4 years in 225L American oak barrels handmade by the López de Heredia coopers, racked twice per year and at least 5 years in bottle before released.
Nose: Fresh and fruity, with suggestions of bitter almonds, and hazelnuts.
Taste: Smooth, and fresh with body and complexity due to the aging conditions.
Gastronomy: Great with spicy foods, Indian, Mexican, and Chinese style cuisine. Perfect with sausage, charcuterie.
Color: Onion skin, velvety, hints.
Talking About the Wines:
-The Wine Advocate, Aug '22 gave 96+ points to 2012 Viña Tonodonia Gran Reserva (rosé). “I love the rosé 2012 Viña Tondonia Rosado Gran Reserva, perhaps the finest vintage (together with the 2010) of the modern releases produced again since 2008. It’s a textbook example of this unusual rosé a blend of 60% Garnacho (they use the masculine form of the name of the grape), 30% Tempranillo and 10% Viura that matured in American oak barrels for four years, during which time the wine acquired an orange color and nutty nose with notes of candied orange peel, mushroom and forest floor.”
-Vinous Media, Apr '21 gave 95 points to 2010 Viña Tonodonia Gran Reserva (rosé). "Bright, copper-hued orange. Intensely perfumed strawberry, cherry, blood orange and floral scents are complemented by emerging spiciness and a hint of nuttiness. Energetic red berry, citrus fruit and candied rose flavors show impressive depth as well as vivacity. Lingers with outstanding tenacity on the penetrating finish, which strongly echoes the floral, spice and red fruit notes. This singular wine is showing even better than it did a year ago.”
-The Wine Advocate, Oct '20 gave 93 points to 2011 Viña Tonodonia Gran Reserva (rosé). “It has candied fruit and much riper profile but with the classical old oak and mushroom aromas of Tondonia. There is some lightness in the palate with moderate acidity and refreshing notes of watermelon and rose petals.”
-Wine Spectator, Mar '20 gave 93 points to 2009 Viña Tondonia Gran Reserva (rosé). "The deep rusty color announces that this is not a typical rosé. Distinctive offering tangy acidity and light, firm tannins that frame the rich texture, giving this plenty of structure for food. Orange peel and tarragon, iodine and beeswax notes frame the dried cherry and tangerine flavors. Unique. Garncaho, Tempranillo and Viura. Drink now through 2029."