2001 La Rioja Alta "Viña Ardanza" Reserva Especial Rioja SKU #1069109

Price: $69.99

JS 97 RP 93 VN 92
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Professional Reviews

K&L Notes

La Rioja Alta makes some of the very finest wines in all of the region: Arana Reserva, Gran Reserva 904, Gran Reserva 890. It has always been the Ardanza, though, which I've enjoyed the most. It is consistent, always elegant, and just a terrifically balanced, classic Rioja. In the very best vintages, La Rioja Alta designates Ardanza as a "Reserva Especial"; this has only happened two other times, in 1964 and 1973. I have not had the '64, but I did recently taste the '73 and it was superb. Yep, this is a wine which ages gracefully for more than three decades. An incredible wine, and in a time where there is no shortage of wine or deals, this is the real deal, and a genuine bargain. (Joe Manekin, K&L Spanish wine buyer)

Staff Reviews

  • Shaun Green
    By: Shaun Green
    K&L Staff Member
    It's hard to say enough about this wine. Beautifully clear and expressive Rioja that should cost twice this much. I keep drinking the bottles I bring home intending to age because it is just so incredibly alluring right now. I'll have to lock some up to make sure I get to see this beauty when it's mature, because it will only get better from here.
    Drink from 2013 to 2030
  • Gary Westby
    By: Gary Westby
    K&L Staff Member
    This is classic, balanced, real Rioja. The folks at La Rioja Alta are selling their 2001 Reserva at the same time Muga is releasing a 2005 Gran Reserva and it boggles my mind how large their cellar must be in order to hold so many harvests for so long! Cinnamon and I had this at home with some pork tenderloin medallions with a pepper and black truffle sauce that I made, and the wine went perfectly. Treat this $30 bottle like it was $100- it deserves the respect. If you like spicy, complex, old world red with seamless texture and lots of complexity, don't miss this fine bottle!
    Top Value! Drink from 2013 to 2031
  • Jeff Garneau
    By: Jeff Garneau
    K&L Staff Member
    Quite possibly the best value in a Spanish wine we sell. 2001 was the best vintage in Rioja since 1995, and we have not seen its equal since. The 2001 Vina Ardanza Reserva Especial from La Rioja Alta embodies the very best winemaking traditions in the region as well as the extraordinary character of this vintage. Bright, wild berry fruits nicely accented by notes of coconut and cinnamon, tobacco and leather. Enjoy this with grilled lamb or your favorite paella recipe.
  • Illya Haase
    By: Illya Haase
    K&L Staff Member
    Just Outstanding! No wonder it keeps selling out. This is only the third vintage of Vina Ardanza to reach the "Reserva Especial" level through La Rioja Alta's 120 year history, following the great Rioja vintages of 1964 and 1973. It is drinking just beautifully right now. But, if you wait to open it in the next ten years, you, my friend, are in for a treat!


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