TN: 2009 La Rioja Alta Rioja Viña Ardanza Reserva

  • 2009 La Rioja Alta Rioja Viña Ardanza Reserva - Spain, La Rioja, La Rioja Alta, Rioja (10/10/2019)
    Top 3 wines of the night. This wine does have some dill but also features wood, raspberries, floral, minerals and leather. Complex and long finish. I love the concept La Rioja Alta lives by. Release the wines when they are entering the drinking window. This wine has another decade of enjoyment. 93 points now with 95 potential. (93 pts.)

Posted from CellarTracker

Thanks for the note, I picked up some of this from JJB on a whim. Glad to hear it’s showing well.

Did you like the '09 better than the '08?

Very similar in quality. The 09 has a little more of the dill element than the 08 but it didn’t’ distract from the quality of the wine.

2008 La Rioja Alta Rioja Viña Ardanza Reserva - Spain, La Rioja, La Rioja Alta, Rioja (10/25/2018)
La Rioja Tasting at Haskell’s, Minnetonka (Haskells, Minnetonka): Leather, mineral, spice, wood and cherry. Quite balanced and showing well again tonight. This wine is hitting its peak. While aging is an option it is drinking great right now. Drink now to 2020. (92 points)
2008 La Rioja Alta Rioja Viña Ardanza Reserva - Spain, La Rioja, La Rioja Alta, Rioja (6/14/2018)
Day 1: This wine is outstanding! Slow ox for 2 hours. Nice fruit featuring Bing cherries and blueberries. Oak is present but settle down after an initial taste. Classic Rioja with leather, minerals and spices. On the finish picks up some mint elements. This is a super complex effort with a medium to long finish. I see this wine aging well for a decade. One of the better QPRs of the year. 93-95.
Day 2: Interesting on this wine. While I thought it might improve the opposite happened. Wine lacked the fruit and complexity of day 1. If I were to rate it on day two 87 points would have been given.

Recommendation: This is why I experiment over 3 days. This wine is a day 1 pop and pour and see the evolution over the night. I would actually consume these within 3 years for maximum enjoyment. (93 points)

Pricing on this is definitely different across the US. In Minneapolis we are paying way more. $34.95 best price vs. $25.99 Venice, California.

It’s personal taste but the vintages were quite different in Rioja. In 2008 they had rain and mildew in the spring, then cool weather, and they were finally saved by a nice warm autumn. A lot of growers were stressed about it until the grapes were finally ready for harvest. But it’s a fairly lean year. OTOH, 2009 started cold but turned very hot and dry and that caused a lot of concern until just before harvest when they had a little rain and then a dry, perfect harvest. It was a much larger harvest than 2008 and the wines are bigger and showier. It’s a great vintage for drinking now and many wines should age well. All around, if you have a choice, that’s the vintage I’d buy. And Rioja Alta is pretty large and established so they, like the other big players, were able to select the most excellent grapes from the abundant harvest.

Thanks Greg. I’m a bit hesitant to devote more space in my cellar to LRA because of how much '08 Ardanza and '07 904 I bought, especially since I think the oak masks the fruit just a tad.

But the '10 904 is getting glowing reviews, so I might pick some of that and wait for the '10 Ardanza.