Place: Rioja, Spain
Valenciso is a portmanteau of founders Luis Valentín and Carmen Enciso’s names and is representative of the truly mutual involvement in their operation. Their winery is situated at Ollauri in the north of Rioja Alta where they have been crafting small-batch, organically farmed, concrete-raised wine from old vines since 1998. The fruit for this cuvee comes from a single 35-year-old vineyard on a ‘ladera’ (slope) of Cabama, hence the name.
It is brisk and lively yet rich and powerful owing to cool fermentation in concrete allowing the fruit to play first chair. When we think of the kind of Rioja we want to be drinking, this stands vividly at the front of the crowd.