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September 17, 2015

Gran Reserva 890 La Rioja Alta 2004

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We are delighted to release the outstanding and highly anticipated 2004 vintage of La Rioja Alta Gran Reserva 890. La Rioja Alta deem their 890 Gran Reserva as their greatest wine, leading them to apply the ‘Selección Especial’ designation. Rioja Alta only make their 890 in exceptional vintages, on average three a decade.  Aging of the Rioja Alta 890 is tireless, painstaking and lasted for a full 13 years with no expense spared. Firstly the wine is fermented in stainless steel vats and then moved to 100% new American oak for a full six years and racked 12 times (the 904 is aged in used American oak for four years and manually racked eight times).

The 2004 vintage has been rated excellent by the Rioja Control board, due to wonderful weather throughout the growing season, with sunny days and moderate nights. We have previously released La Rioja Alta 904 2004 which is already considered one of their greatest ever 904s, awarded 96 points from the Wine Advocate. The 890 comes from their oldest vineyards, with a meticulous selection process, it is more concentrated, with more focus than the stunning 904.

In 2004 Rioja Alta have only made 3,100 cases of 890 for the entire globe. Moreover, due to a favorable FX rate it is being released £50 cheaper than the 2001. As one can see from the price below, market scarcity of the 890 drives the prices upwards soon after release. One can expect the price to steadily increase over the next two to five years, the stunning 94 point scoring 1998 already cost £425 a six pack and the market is awaiting a very special score for the 890 2004 vintage:

 

 

 

 

 

Vintage Score Price 
2004 N/A £310
2001 95 £360
1998 94 £425
1995 96 £600
1981 92 £1,000

Wine Advocate Scores*

La Rioja Alta
La Rioja Alta is one of the benchmarks for traditional Rioja. The Estate is celebrated for its Gran Reservas 904 and 890; the 890 is named after the genesis of La Rioja Alta in 1890. The Gran Reservas are only made in exceptional vintages and are considered to be the pinnacle of Rioja today.

The Estate begun in earnest in 1890 founded on the very spot where the head office is located today. Like most great estates, La Rioja Alta remains true to traditional practices, while integrating beneficial modern variances on the winemaking leitmotif. Their two wineries complement each other perfectly: The Haro winery is cited in the Station District, it embodies the full flavour of traditional Rioja winemaking and the facility is perfect for ageing wines. The modern facility in Labastida was built specifically to provide the perfect environment for maximising the fermentation process.

The 360 hectare vineyards are located in the very best parts of Rioja Alta which boast limestone soil, in the subzones of Rodezno, Labastida, Briones, Cenicero and Fuenmayor. In addition they have a 63 hectare estate in Tudelilla in Rioja Baja to maximise the growth of Garnacha. La Rioja Alta harvest 5,000 kg/hectare, 24% less than the maximum permitted across the region, resulting in very high quality fruit.

To buy this wine click here.