Not much changes at Lopez de Heredia. While in recent times the rest of Rioja has undergone rapid reinvention with new oak, shorter periods of ageing and simpler wines, these bastions of the old school have continued exactly the same way as always - using large, old casks (made at their own, on-site cooperage) and ageing their wines for years beyond what is required.
Now of course the pendulum has swung firmly back in their direction, and this most traditional of Rioja producers once again makes some of the most sought-after wines in the region. Their best and most famous are the Tondonia range (Tondonia is the vineyard), and the latest vintage of the Reserva Red is 2009. At eleven years of age it is a beautifully developed, subtle and complex wine. It has lovely red fruit and all the earthy, leathery notes you want in a classic mature Rioja. It is gorgeous now but if you want to keep it even longer that is no problem. These wines always mature slowly, adding layers of complexity with each passing year.
We have four cases of this wine here now. For a wine of this age and quality, it offers truly remarkable value. Don't miss it.