Bodegas Amaren, El Cristo De Samaniego, DOCa Rioja Alavesa, Spain, 2020
Jon Cañas (Luis Cañas’ grandson) is the imaginative winemaker behind Bodegas Amaren.
Jon has been granted free rein to explore the character of Alavesa’s vineyards, giving us a raw, modern interpretation of Rioja Alavesa. Bodegas Amaren is comprised of some of best and highest altitude vineyards around the villages of Samaniego and Leza, where the soil is poor and gnarly vines, ageing up to and over 100 years old, produces small bunches, perfect for making highly concentrated Rioja wines.
A singular Vineyard in Samaniego at the foothills of Sierra Cantabria al 625m altitude. Soils are made up of sand and limestone.
Upon entering the bodega, bunches are carefully selected before being de-stemmed so the individual berries can be sorted based on their weight. Grapes are pre-macerated at 8ºC for five days. Only the most perfect grapes are allowed to pass to wooden vats of French oak for fermentation, which lasts seven days. The resulting wine is then racked to new French oak barrels for malolactic fermentation, during which the lees are pumped over periodically. The wine is later clarified with egg white to obtain a well-rounded wine with excellent oak integration. A total of 12 to 14 months in French oak from a selection of oak forests in central France and some American Oak and 32% in concrete vat.
Type: French 225L and American
% wine oaked: 100
% new oak: None
Cherry red, the fine elegant and complex nose gives way to excellent concentration of black fruit and subtle touches of creamy oak as well as hints of roasted coffee and minerals. This is full bodied, fleshy and elegant with plenty of complexity and power.
Red meats, stews, game, cured cheeses and different types of blue fish.
4 x 75cl
Award: Tim Atkin Rioja Report 2023 94 Points
Award: Guia Peñin 2018 93 Points