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Armit releases ‘crown jewel’ Rioja

Published:  03 April, 2019

Armit Wines has announced the release of the third Gran Reserva from La Rioja Alta SA - Viña Arana Gran Reserva 2012, making La Rioja Alta one of only a few wineries in the region to have three Gran Reserva wines on the market.

“The release of this Viña Arana Gran Reserva is a historic moment for us and we have chosen a very dear brand from our winery,” said winemaker Julio Sáenz.

“We used a traditional blending with GR ‘vocation’: the Tempranillo grapes provide structure and elegance and Graciano, only used for our Gran Reservas, provides greater aromatic intensity and acidity. I think it’s the perfect balance for ageing.”

The vintage was marked by heavy drought, but late September rains had a “very positive effect on vine development leading to perfect ripening” to create a wine of “exceptional quality with excellent polyphenolic structure and magnificent aromatic character”.

Sáenz added: “It’s a really fresh and elegant wine with structure and high aromatic intensity, easy to pair and great to enjoy. It’s the next step in our acknowledgment of a successful category of wines that has made Rioja great and famous.”

Viña Arana Gran Reserva 2012 is a blend of 95% Tempranillo grapes coming from the over forty-year-old vines of Las Cuevas, El Palo and Las Monjas in Rodezno and 5% Graciano grapes from the Montecillo estate in Fuenmayor.

The Tempranillo and Graciano grapes were aged separately in American oak barrels and racked every six months during the ageing process. The wine was aged over three years and the final blend combining the two grape varieties was made in March 2016.

“Armit Wines have been working as the exclusive importer of La Rioja Alta SA. for almost 10 years and I am delighted that we will be the first to release this new wine worldwide,” said Kirsten Kilby, managing director of Armit Wines.

“The impeccably elegant and fresh Viña Arana Gran Reserva is a testament to the incredible wine-making skills of Julio Sáenz and the team at La Rioja Alta SA.”

Viña Arana Gran Reserva will be available from 2 April, with an RRP of £35.