Bodegas Sierra Cantabria Rioja Reserva "Unica" 2019 (Rioja, Spain) - [WA 93] [WE 93] [VM 92] [WS 92]

Bodegas Sierra Cantabria Rioja Reserva "Unica" 2019
(Rioja, Spain) - [WA 93] [WE 93] [VM 92] [WS 92]

Regular price $48.00 Sale price $39.97 Save $8.03

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About the Winery:
Founded by Guillermo Eguren, who is a self-made "bodeguero", coming from a family tradition of vine growers. Today, the fourth generation of the Eguren family, Marcos Eguren, is the winemaker and director of the winery. Sierra Cantabria has come to the forefront of Spanish wineries in the last 15 years. This is from the extreme care that they give to their vineyards, located in the best terrain of Rioja, the savoir-faire of Marcos Eguren, and his price-conscious policies. 

Vineyards are located in San Vicente de la Sonsierra, one of the most famous towns in Rioja, known for the quality of its grapes. The grapes are sourced on 267 acres (108 ha), from 1,440-1,740 ft. above sea level (480-580 m), spread among the towns of San Vicente de la Sonsierra, Labastida, and Laguardia.

About the Wine:
The Eguren family are the pioneers in the production of parcel specific single cru wines from Rioja in the Burgundy model. Sierra Cantabria Reserva Única is the family's introduction to their single vineyard range, which is sourced from a spectacular vineyard on the banks of the Ebro River in Labastida. The entire vineyard is vinified as a Reserva, and throughout the aging process, Marcos Eguren carries out a severe barrel selection. The wine is produced every vintage, but in varying quantities (1,500-4,000 cases) depending on the quality of the year. Unica represents a premier cru style Rioja single vineyard with fantastic structure, a seamless texture, and a pure red fruit character.

Sierra Cantabria Reserva Única is produced from a single contiguous vineyard in Labastida, called La Llana. The vineyard is planted on high density trellises on the northern banks of the Ebro River.

Blend: 97% Tempranillo, 3% Graciano

Viticulture: Practicing organic dry farmed viticulture with certain selective biodynamic
practices. La Llana is trained to high density trellises. Manual work and harvest, with no mechanization whatsoever.

Winemaking: The grapes undergo rigorous double-manual sorting, both before and
after destemming. 100% of the clusters are destemmed, but not crushed. Temperature controlled fermentation in stainless steel (inoculated) with indigenous yeast that have been selected from their vineyard and cellar. Maceration lasts 20-30 days. Malolactic fermentation in barrel.

Ageing: 24 months in 60% French and 40% American oak barrels. 30% new, 70%
used (maximum third vintage barrels). Racked regularly every four months during the first year and every six months during the second year. Ageing is carried out in subterranean cellars that were carved by the family at the end of the 1990's. Due to the low temperatures and high humidity, the rate of oxidation is reduced allowing the family to work with low levels of SO2.

Ratings & Reviews

93 Points - Wine Advocate:
"The 2019 Reserva Única was produced with Tempranillo and 3% Graciano from one single vineyard, fermented, destemmed and with indigenous yeasts selected from their vineyards. It matured in oak barrels, 60% French and 40% American, for 24 months, including malolactic, and it was racked every four months. This is somewhere between the more classical range (Crianza, Reserva and Gran Reserva) and the more modern one. It's quite complete and balanced in a classical year, with ripeness, 14.1% alcohol, a pH of 3.66 and 5.6 grams of acidity, keeping the balance. The Eguren family considers 2019 one of their best recent harvests. 20,256 bottles produced. It was bottled in January 2022." - Luis Gutierrez (Feb 2024)

93 Points - Wine Enthusiast:
"Inky garnet in the glass, this wine offers a bouquet of cassis, butterscotch and crumbled sage leaf. Dark and red-berry flavors and notes of cocoa bean, eucalyptus, licorice and violet are set into a wall of compact tannins that slowly crumbles to expose a spicy, long-lasting finish." - Mike DeSimone (Dec 2023)

92 Points - Vinous Media:
"The 2019 Reserva Única is primarily Tempranillo with a 3% addition of Graciano, sourced from San Vicente de la Sonsierra and Laguardia. Aged for 24 months in a combination of French (60%) and American (40%) oak barrels, 15% new, this purple wine reveals notes of sour cherry and pomegranate, intertwined with wild herbs and a cedar-vanilla layer. Dry and juicy on the palate, the fruit flavors linger long with a loose expression." - Joaquin Hidalgo (Apr 2024)

92 Points - Wine Spectator:
"Sleek and well-knit, this medium- to full-bodied red showcases a ripe core of black plum and mulberry fruit accented by fragrant flavors of Earl Grey tea leaves, anise, dried flowers and minerally smoke and spices. Silky and graceful on the palate, with supple tannins trimming the finish. Tempranillo and Graciano. Drink now through 2034. 1,714 cases made, 1,000 cases imported." - Alison Napjus (Mar 2024)