Wine Geek Recommended
Meet the CoolVines Wine Geek! He’ll guide you toward – or away from! – wines that have a unique flavor profile: intentionally oxidized wines, earthy, stinky wines, wines with a bit of fritz on the tongue. Look for him throughout our web site, and on the shelves in our stores, to point the way toward these geeky wines.
A stunning Gran Reserva made of 95% Tempranillo and 5% Graciano -- all from the winery's best vineyards in Rioja Alavesa. The grapes were handpicked and expertly handled in a new facility that is a true marvel of modern technology. Powerful and structured, with silky tannins and a lingering complexity, this wine is a fantastic deal for a classic Gran Reserva of this quality.
CVNE (Compañía Vinícola del Norte de España) is one of the most renowned and historic bodegas in all of Spain. Founded in 1879 by the Real de Asúa brothers, Eusebio and Raimundo, the company has been an integral part of the Rioja region’s ascendance in the world of fine wine. With their combination of traditional roots and innovative vision, CVNE has been one of Rioja’s most reliable sources for high quality wine. The company is still run by descendants of the Real de Asúa brothers, now represented by the fifth generation with current CEO Victor Urrutia Ybarra.
Since its founding, CVNE’s goal has been to increase the scope of production while maintaining the level of quality on which their reputation was built. Forty years after the original bodega was created, CVNE expanded into the Alavesa region. Today, CVNE is comprised of three separate bodegas: Cune, Viña Real, and Contino. Each of the three estates produces a distinct style of wine from a distinct terroir, and each of their flagship bottlings occupies a well-deserved place in the pantheon of great Spanish wine.
The Rioja DOC sits astride the Ebro river, as it winds its way from its source in the Sierra de Cantabria range, to the Mediterranean at it's mouth just below Barcelona. Divided into three subzones, wines of Rioja often depend largely on which part of the region the vines are grown.
To the northwest lies Rioja Alta, where Tempranillo and Garnacha vines grow on the higher elevations of the foothills of the Cantabrias. Next to it is the Basque region of Rioja Alavesa, where the Alava province juts into the Ebro Valley. To the southeast is the hotter, Mediterranean-influenced Rioja Baja, where more of the native Graciano is blended into the area's reds.
Rioja's wines have historically been simple reds, blended and aged in American oak. An influx of French winemaking practices led to more refined efforts at estate-bottling and more judicious use of oak, and more French oak at that. Nowadays the region is struggling to find a cohesive identity, producing excellent wines of both new and old world character.