Luis Cañas, Rioja Reserva, Selección de la Familia, 2016


Wow, what a wine! The 100% new oak used to mature this wine for a period of 18 months is prominent, but with the extra care taken to select the perfect grapes for this cuvée, it is incredibly well integrated. The spicy leather and ripe fruit that leaps out of the glass is delightful. A true testament to the attention to detail that is the keystone of this winery and that which is required for a fine wine by any standard. All of this is prevalent while still being able to maintain exceptional value.


In 1970 Luis Cañas changed two hundred years of tradition and became the first winemaker in Rioja Alavesa to bottle his young wine rather than sell it as bulk. This bold move, and his continued pioneering spirit, has cemented the winery’s enviable reputation as one of the most progressive in the region. Sheltered below the watchful Sierra Cantabria, the vineyards are all old, small plots on chalky-clay soils with a dedicated team of vineyard workers carrying out organic practices and a purpose built, fully equipped accommodation block was built for the entire vineyard team in 2006. Today, now in his late 80’s, Luis still leads the annual harvest, standing at the head of the selection table, keen to ensure that only the best parcels of grapes are used in his wines. His son, Juan Luis Cañas is now the powerhouse behind this highly accomplished winery, but everywhere you go there is a feeling of family, and especially of the lasting legacy that Luis Cañas will leave for both his son and the Alavesa.

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