TN: 2001 Heredia Bosconia Reserva

I wasn’t sure whether to decant this or not, so I erred with a quick splash decant and then back into the bottle for the drive to my folks.

Initially, there wasn’t much in the way of aromatics so I poured it back into a decanter and about 30 minutes later, voila. I love the Bosconia bottling for its feminine/silky texture and this didnt disappoint.

Obviously still a baby but the wood plays a supporting role rather than intruding on the fruit - does Heredia use the same oak treatment for both the Reserva and Gran Reservas, or is it just a matter of time in barrel?

Just curious.

Anyway, spot on as usual - I’d give this a 30-60 minute decant if you’re going to drink now, based on my 1 experience with this bottle. Great partner for the turkey.

Galloni had a nice report on Lopez, and the only things I can decipher from the article about aging is that the GRs are from 1 vintage, and spend 8 to 9 years in American oak.

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I’m not an ebob subscriber, but you’re saying (Galloni anyway) that a 2001 Bosconia is a blend of other vintages?

Are there laws in Spain (or Rioja) regarding vintages and grapes being included in bottles?

Sounds bizarre to me - why would they slap 2001 on a bottle if they’re including other vintages?

Especially since '01 was a damn good vintage in Spain.

Btw I’m not saying Ian has this wrong as I reread my post - I’m just confused b/c I never knew heredia (or other spanish producers?) were allowed and do blend on vintage wines…

Anyone have insight?

Not sure what copy and paste rules are, so will summarize what he said.

Maria Jose López de Heredia was interviewed and quoted as saying there is a tradition blending vintages. Galloni then noted that the main difference for the GR is that it comes from 1 vintage.

I will do some more homework tonight on rules and regs. Frankly, I didn’t know this either, just thought this was interesting.

And you were only looking for the barrel programming difference :wink:

I never heard anything about vintage blending, but I am very curious about the differences between the Reservas and Gran Reservas, mainly about whether they start with the same juice or if the GRs get better material. I would be inclined to suspect the latter because the Reservas can’t seem to handle more than a few years of age from release, but I don’t know.

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FWIW, this is all news to me.

I couldn’t find anything in Jancis or another info dedicated site about this, but looks like they do it and don’t lose their designation, so it appears legal!

Interesting link. The barrel-by-barrel bottling definitely explains the extreme bottle variation.

I am not sure what María José told Galloni or if there were any facts lost in translation but you are allowed to have up to 15% from another vintage according to EU laws if I recall correctly.

With that said, the main difference between Reserva and Gran Reserva’s from LdH would be the quality of the fruit. If the fruit is not good enough to spend the additional barrel aging, it will not be used for their Gran Reserva.


Hello everyone:

This is María José López de Heredia. I got this link from a friend. First of all, I would like to thank you for your interest in wanting to know more about our Viña Bosconia Reserva 2001 and about our winemaking procedures.

Let me explain. Before 1981 all our Crianza and Reserva wines were released without the vintage shown on the bottle. The fact that a vintage is shown on a bottle has not been our decision but an obligation of the EU law as José says.

According to the EU law the vintage written down guarantees that 85% of the vintage is the one shown on the bottle. In this case 2001. The reason why we never showed it before was that it was not a 100% vintage wine. These bottles were released with a note on the label saying Bosconia 5º año. (It meant that it has been aged for 5 years).

The reason why we blend our Crianza and Reserva wines is that we need to maintain a consistent quality year after year. Therefore, when all the grapes from a particular year are not 100% perfect we need to blend with a small percentage of other vintages in order to balance color, acidity, alcohol…etc…Even we could blend up to a 17% if we ask for an special permission to our Rioja regulator council.

One should understand that winemaking and wine control by the administration are 2 different subjects. Historically, and also nowadays (in China there are up to rates of 70% falsification in some wines) there was a lot fraud. Therefore all these rules are established to control blendings and have no relation to winemaking decisions.

In relation to this, for our Gran Reserva wines we do not need to blend since they are small lots of wines that are so balanced and perfect and come from exceptional vintages that we always release them as vintage wine and we specify clearly in the label of each bottle: Cosecha de 1991 like the current vintage. No blendings are made. You have to realise that in 132 years of our family history of wine making we have made 29 vintages of Gran Reserva. No more!. Due to this exceptional quality we do age them longer in barrel (up to 10 years in some occasions) because the grapes can perfectly handle this time span and we bottle age them for a further 8 to 10 years depending on each vintage.

Finally I have to clear that, no matter that these are EU rules, each winemaker can take a different decision and blend or not blend according to the style newhere of wine they search. All that I have explained above is related to our own particular way of winemaking.

Hope this helps.
María José López de Heredia

A very warm welcome to WineBerserkers, Maria Jose!

Thank you for stopping by with the lengthy explanation Maria. You are a very welcome addition to our forum. Please stick around!


Thanks so much for posting, definitely helps clear up the confusion.

How long do you recommend cellaring something like the 2001 Bosconia - or would you suggest drinking them on release?

Hello Peter:

You can store it for 10 years and more if you want and have the patience. Of course, only in case that you have perfect conditions of constant temperature, high humedity (90% if posible) darkness and no noice or vibrations. If not, drink it.

María José López de Heredia

Thanks very much Maria and welcome. About the same time you were first posting, I was purchasing some 2001 Bosconia Reserva from a fellow Berskerker and we were talking about the addition of different vintages to the blend. Although my cellar is significantly < 90% humidity, I’m willing to risk it [cheers.gif].

Thanks Maria!

Maria, welcome! It’s Roberto from Wine Expo in Santa Monica, Ca. So good to see you here. You will certainly bring a great perspective here should you decide to stick around.

What is funny is that, not a half an hour ago, I and our mutual friend, drummer, foodie and marathon runner Walter Garces, were discussing how surprised we were that one of your whites was on the Wine Spectator’s Top 100 List.

Looking forward to seeing this year’s holiday card and hope to see YOU next time you are in town, Roberto Rogness