miércoles, 23 de enero de 2013

Bodegas Barón de Ley (Mendavia - Navarra / La Rioja)


Founded in 1985, Barón de Ley is a fast-growing winery located in Rioja Baja. The bodega is located on the grounds of a 16th century monastery on the east bank of the river Ebro in Mendavia (Navarra), the estate covers 175 acres planted primarily to Tempranillo, and a small amount of Cabernet Sauvignon. A look inside the old monastery reveals immaculate and efficient facilities, housing high-tech temperature controlled steel tanks, 10,000 new oak barrels, and a 5-million-bottle cellar.

In 2004, the winery purchased an additional 500 parcels of land, resulting in a 1200 acre estate that will be planted with Tempranillo as well as Garnacha, Graciano and experimental varieties such as Maturana. This project is a strong testament to the estate’s desire to continue to control all levels of winemaking, from vine to bottle.

Barón de Ley is a winery which was devised and founded in 1985 by a small group of Rioja professionals; they acquired the Imas estate, within the boundaries of Mendavia (Navarra) and on the left bank of the River Ebro. They attend on producing wines of quality, with a Bordeaux model in mind “estate wine”, where vineyards play a vital role. The new owners planted 90 hectares of vines, the majority naturally being Tempranillo, 20 hectares of Cabernet Sauvignon, and as under Rioja regulations such vines may be planted with an 'experimental' status. In 1995 a further eight hectares of Tempranillo were planted, most of this being on the steep terraces that lie next to the vineyard.

Just a few minutes after the grapes are picked by hand, they are received in the vinification bodega. The first vital stage is the classification of the grapes. With the prime aim of excellent quality in mind, they have to assess not only the differences between varieties, but also the huge diversity that the Tempranillo grape can display from one estate to another, depending on its condition, ripeness, etc., so that the processes have to be adapted as far as possible to each type of grape. To this end, the grapes entering are classified right next to the hopper, separating them according to type and sending them via the hopper to the corresponding vat.

Ageing the wine in 225 ltr. Oak casks are one of the cornerstones of the production of fine wines in Rioja, and it finds a true shrine in the barrel cellar of Barón de Ley. In a temperature-controlled building which guarantees perfect conditions of temperature and humidity, the 14,000 impeccably stacked, new American and French oak casks will receive all the Barón de Ley wines. Of these casks, approximately 12,000 are of American oak and 2,000 of French oak. Although the majority of the barrels used are American, as is the norm with many Rioja producers. Barón de Ley is using increasingly French oak from Allier, reflecting the changing in style of the wine into a more modern, "new wave" Rioja producer, but also producing wines y a traditional style.

When oak ageing is complete, all the wine of a vintage is gradually removed from the casks and taken to vats. This is when the blending of the wines takes place, prior to bottling.

In fact, the wide range of types of cask, suppliers, types of inner toasting, etc., means that when the wines leave the cask they have a whole mosaic of wines with different ageing characteristics. This diversity will make a huge contribution to their richer aromatic complexity once they are blended or “assembled”, a symphony of wines expertly conducted by the winemaker's nose.

According to regulations for Rioja, oak ageing consists of 12 months for Reserva wines and 24 months for the Gran Reservas. Baron de Ley wines continue their ageing in accordance with Riojan regulations in the Baron de Ley buildings, which can house up to four million bottles of the Reserva wine. The Gran Reserva is stored in the Benedictine monastery which has a half million bottle capacity. Reservas are aged for a further two years in bottle, whereas Gran Reservas see another three years at least before release.

Grupo Baron de Ley
Address: Apartado de coreos 1091, 26080 Logroño, Rioja
Telephone: +34 948 694 303
Fax: +34 948 694 304

- El Coto de Rioja S.A. (Bodega de Vinos de la D.O.Ca. Rioja) www.elcoto.com       
- Bodegas Maximo S.L. (Bodega de Vinos Varietales) www.bodegasmaximo.com   
- Finca Museum S.L. (Bodega de Vinos de la DO Cigales) www.bodegasmuseum.com       
- Dehesa Baron de Ley S.A. (Productos derivados del cerdo ibérico con D.O. Dehesa de Extremadura).

Baron de Ley S.A.
Employees: 106
Sales: EUR 77.36 million ($101 million) (2004)
Stock Exchanges: Bolsa de Madrid 


Baron de Ley Varietals:

- Baron de Ley Tempranillo 2010: Comes exclusively from the farm "Carboneras". Situated 850 meters above sea level, is the highest elevation vineyard designation of origin, located in the old Sierra de Los Cameros, and is called "mountain Tempranillo". Aged for 12 months in American oak barrels, this 2010 today belongs to the great vintages of Rioja rated as excellent, also with harvests of 2001, 2004 and 2005. Approximate price: 10 €

- Baron de Ley Graciano 2010: This wine has a modern cut, intense, fresh and mineral. Graciano grapes used in the production of this wine come from the farm "Los Almendros", located in the most Mediterranean part of Rioja, at 460 meters above sea level. The wine has a cherry red and blue rim colour. On the nose we can find intense aromas of black fruits and spices like black and white pepper. On the palate is fresh with a great personality. It has been aged for 15 months in American oak barrels. Approximate price: 10 €

- Baron de Ley Maturana 2010: From the first large planting of Maturana on the DOCa Rioja, the vineyard is located in "Finca Alegría", near the renowned Monastery of the winery. It is an unknown variety, but cultivated originally in Rioja, its cultivation is been accepted by the regulatory council since 2007. The grape cluster is small and very dark resulting in wines of high acidity and intense colour, which work very well with short wood ageing. This wine is aged 12 months in oak.

This wine has an intense and bright cherry colour with a light orange trim. In the  nose we found black and red fruit aromas, with toasted oak sweets spices, vanilla dominates, and light reminiscent of chocolate and coffee bean. In the palate is fresh, soft, and fruity aftertaste. Ideal with red or white meats and snacks. Aproxímate price: 10 €

- Barón de Ley Blanco Reserva Tres Viñas (Viura, Malvasia, Garnacha Blanca) 2008: This wine has a nice golden color. Elegant aromas of enormous complexity, yellow flowers notes, honey and lime, with perfect coupage of wood and wine. On the palate is oily and very peculiar. No doubt a work of art at a great price. If it just had a little more acidity it will be a masterpiece. Approximate price: 15 €

A white who wants to rediscover the great white Riojas from the old days. The three white traditional grape varieties from highlands are picked by hand, on a very selective harvest, then aged in oak barrels for 12 months and then aged in the bottle.

- Barón de Ley Reserva 2005 Siete Viñas (Tempranillo, Graciano, Garnacha, Mazuelo, Viura, Malvasia, and Garnacha Blanca): This wine has a deep cherry color. On the nose we find ripe fruits and coffee beans. On the palate is complex with ripe fruit presence. This wine has the strength and intensity of a modern wine and the balance of a classic rioja. Approximate price: 40 €

In this wine coupage we find 7 different historical grape varietals of the DOC Rioja. White and red varieties together to provide the best in a wine set.

It is a wine that contrasts with the "globalization of taste." It is estimated that worldwide there are about 7,000 varieties of "Vitis vinifera" but 95% of wine consumption worldwide is concentrated in 10 varieties of grapes. This is how the idea of this wine was created trying to produce a different an exotic rioja wine.

It comes from an estate of 16 hectares of old vines, with over 60 years average of age, located in the village of El Villar de Arnedo (Rioja Baja), a place where all the seven varieties are cultivated together: Tempranillo, Graciano, Garnacha, Mazuelo, Viura, Malvasia and Garnacha Blanca.

Its vinification is performed in four different stages. On one hand, Tempranillo, Viura, Malvasia and Garnacha Blanca, and on the other and independently the Graciano, Garnacha and Mazuelo. Also the crianza period is also performed according to the needs of each variety, using American oak barrels for Tempranillo and Mazuelo, using a second year French oak barrels for the Garnacha and high toasted French oak barrels for the temperamental Graciano.

Baron de Ley Gran Reserva 2005

- Tasting Notes: This wine has an attractive ruby colour. On the nose is very aromatic, showing a "bouquet" with ripe black fruit, toasted wood and leather. After some time in the glass, the aromas evolve traces of spices and snuff. On the palate is fresh and lively, it has a lingering finish. Approximate price: 14 €

- Vineyards: This wine requires careful selection of grapes. Baron de Ley Gran Reserva is made from grapes from the cooler areas of the estate of "Imas" in Mendavia (Rioja Baja), where the ideal orientation and limited productivity offer ideal grapes for this style of wine.

- Varieties: 90% Tempranillo and 10% other grape varieties, harvested manually in small crates, reaching the winery in perfect conditions.

- Processing: The grapes are destemmed before moving to the fermentation tanks stainless steel. Fermentation takes place at controlled temperatures around 30ºC, with pumping and tasting daily musts, and after an additional maceration ten days to reach the optimal balance between good colour and structure and rounded tannins and gentle.

- Ageing: If there are styles of wine in the world that could be called "classics” Rioja reserves are a good example. These wines are made always looking for long aging wines of great longevity and complexity. Thus, following the classical concepts of Rioja, the wine is aged for 24 months in American oak barrels and French (50-50%) and remains in the bottle for five years.

Baron de Ley Finca Monasterio

- Tasting Notes: This wine has a deep cherry red colour. On the nose we find aromas of compote black fruits and traces of toasted wood, spices and pastry. In the mouth, it has a lingering finish and volume, with a Mediterranean cut, round tannins and sweet tooth nuances. Approximate price: 15 €

- Vineyard: Finca Monasterio is made exclusively from grapes from the vineyard of the XVI century Benedictine Monastery in Mendavia (Rioja Baja). This vineyard has high trellises, are pruning and thinning manually; leading to very limited yields (about 4000 Kg / Ha.). All these factors, plus a strong influence of Mediterranean climate gives a good result in terms of maturities sugar as polyphenols.

- Varieties: 80% Tempranillo and 20% other grape varieties, harvested by hand in boxes of 15 kgr.

- Preparation: After manual vintage in boxes, wine grapes arrived in perfect conditions, to a sorting table, where approximately 20% is discarded. The remaining grapes are de-stemmed and moved to stainless steel tanks to ferment at 30°C, with continuous pumping and daily tastings of the musts. After additional two weeks maceration, it gets an excellent colour extraction, and great power and roundness on the palate.

- Aging: 18 months in French oak barrels, and then six months in "foudres" of 10,000 ltrs. French oak, ideal for enhancing the fruity notes of the wine. Finca Monasterio was bottled without being subjected to filtered or stabilized, so you can find natural sediments.

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