Browse Tag

viña tondonia


R. López de Heredia 1981 Rioja Viña Tondonia Gran Reserva (Center-North) – Gorgeous old fruit aromatics of windowsill-cooled summer pie, wooden spice box, and soft suggestions of earth glide from the glass, but this is no fading beauty. On the contrary, the palate is fulsome and almost lush, with well-aged but still vibrant red fruit, more than a few hints of spice, and a great purity of texture. The acidity is strong enough that those who fear it will wish to take care, but otherwise it’s an exciting counterpoint to the suppleness of the balance of the wine. Mature, for sure, but probably nowhere close to decline. (11/09)

Our kelly

R. López de Heredia 1997 Rioja “Gran Reserva” Viña Tondonia Rosado (Center-North) – Restrained. Very restrained. The bony, exposed-wrinkle structure of this wine…so unique among rosés…is a little more stretched than usual here. Even for Tondonia Rosado, this is bare and stark. There’s that skeletal minerality and steady-state, bell-tone fruit that tastes more like the desert in which one will either find appeal or not (I do), but the wine’s just…well, “tired” isn’t quite right, because it’s not faded beyond its intended form. Perhaps the best way to describe the wine is that it’s afflicted with a very slight pallor. (11/09)

Peter North

R. López de Heredia “Viña Tondonia” 1981 Rioja Blanco (Center-North) – Served too cold, but that’s easily resolved, and the wine improves as it rises through the degrees. Wax, old maple furniture, immovable slabs of granite, and gentle hints of old lemon lead to a candle-flame finish. A little subdued vs. other semi-recent tastings, but still nice. (9/08)

The fine line

[vineyard]López de Heredia “Viña Tondonia” 1997 Rioja Rosado (Center-North) – Old library plus fruitwood-smoked skins and rinds, with the memory and contextualization rather than the actual existence of fruit as it is commonly understood. Breathtakingly opinionated and highly controversial. I both love and hate it, and see no contradiction in those responses. (6/08)

Jenny from the block

Lopez de Heredia “Viña Tondonia” 1997 Rioja Rosado (Center-North) – Such a unique wine. Blood orange through gauze, old roses, concentrated and blocky minerality, and a slightly saline, almost fishy component are supported by elusive acidity and a strong, but not hot, alcoholic texture. Fascinating. (8/07)