Gómez Cruzado debuts 2015 vintage of Cerro Las Cuevas Terroir Selection on the market

A vintage for well-structured wines with good potential for ageing

06 of June of 2018

The GÓMEZ CRUZADO'S winery in Haro’s Barrio de la Estación has launched the 2015 vintage of CERRO LAS CUEVAS TERROIR SELECTION on the market. This wine embodies an old vineyard near the town of Leza in the foothills of the Sierra Cantabria in Rioja Alavesa. CERRO LAS CUEVAS is part of the GÓMEZ CRUZADO TERROIR SELECTION which reflects this century-old winery’s desire to convey the expressions of specific plots of land with truly unique and remarkable characteristics in a designation of origin as vast and diverse as Rioja DOCa. The project is part of the winery’s revitalization led by vinter-oenologists Juan Antonio Leza and David González.

CERRO LAS CUEVAS begins on small plots of bush-trained vines - 95% Tempranillo with a touch of Graciano (5%) - that date back some 80 years and are located near the village of Leza in Rioja Alavesa, at the base of the Sierra Cantabria. This village is characterized by an Atlantic climate and has the highest annual precipitation in the area, with significant fog in autumn and spring. The landscape consists of South-facing slopes and gentle plateaus, where the vineyard intermingles with oak trees, arbutus, kermes oak and thyme. "This spontaneous vegetation reflects the significant Atlantic influence on the local climate, which clearly contributes to the freshness and balance of the wine. The soil is poor, with a high limestone content, which makes for structured wines with exceptional tannic concentration. Thus, a wine rooted in its landscape is born in the legendary terroir of Rioja", declares Juan Antonio Leza, head of viticulture at GÓMEZ CRUZADO.

"Rioja is the sum of many singular locations, several microclimates, soil diversity and different villages’ different work methods. We wish to portray the terroir of Leza. We understand terroir to be the interplay between the climate, the soil - including microfauna - , viticulture, local people’s knowledge and practices, and the ecosystem surrounding the vineyard", explains Juan Antonio Leza.

The village of Leza is one of the places in Rioja DOCa where the most time passes between the beginning of veraison and harvest, which is indicative of the grapes’ slow maturation in this area. David González, GÓMEZ CRUZADO winemaker, emphasizes the benefits of this terroir. "Working in Leza, we can expect Tempranillo to reach complete phenolic maturation without the grapes being comprised in terms of alcohol content, thanks to the weather conditions and Atlantic influence which allow us to preserve freshness".

The winter was very rainy with heavy snow in the higher elevation areas of the designation of origin. The growing season was characterized by high temperatures; thus the vines’ photosynthetic apparatus developed very quickly. Flowering also occurred early and berry growth took place in one of the warmest July’s in recent years. August was dry and cooler with a wide thermal range between day and night. “The end result was an early harvest (12 days ahead of schedule) for well-structured wines with good potential for ageing”, notes David González.

CERRO LAS CUEVAS is crafted according to traditional methods, with fermentation in an open stainless steel tank and the use of local yeast. Gentle plunging carefully extracts noble compounds from the skins. Malolactic fermentation takes place in French oak barrels with a specially selected toast so as not to interfere with the fruit’s pure original expression. Then, the wine is aged for 18 months in French oak barrels, and one year in the bottle before seeing the light of day. The 2015 vintage of CERRO LAS CUEVAS is available in a limited edition of 3,912 bottles (0.75 cl) and 60 magnum bottles.

In addition to CERRO LAS CUEVAS, the TERROIR SELECTION also includes PANCRUDO, a Grenache from Badarán, a village in the Upper Najerilla Valley in Rioja Alta with a cold and humid pre-mountainous climate; and MONTES OBARENES: a white from Haro that pays tribute to Rioja’s great historic whites. This wine is the result of meticulous work in the winery: a long ageing process and the utmost respect for the fruit’s character, to produce a wine that stands the test of time. With its limited edition TERROIR SELECTION, GÓMEZ CRUZADO aims to create wines that are deeply tied to the land and rooted in the landscape and local know-how of Rioja’s most privileged areas.




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