2010 Contino Reserva Rioja SKU #1312372


JS 96 RP 93 VN 93
WS 91
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Professional Reviews

K&L Notes

In 1973, Contino was founded and became the first of first of the new wave of single vineyard Rioja estates. Today, winemaker Jesús Madrazo makes some of Rioja's finest wines, polished and comparably modern, but with a sense of balance and restraint that gives them amazing elegance and great longevity. Simply put, this is modern Rioja executed perfectly. Contino's Rioja also boasts a healthy 10% dollop of older vine Graciano, which enhances the wine's color, freshness and ageability.

Staff Reviews

  • Jason Marwedel
    By: Jason Marwedel
    K&L Staff Member
    You rarely come across wines that have the ability to be all things to all people. The 2010 Contino Reserva is one of those rare finds. Fruit? Absolutely - sweet, supple and incredibly pure. Savor? Yes - complex but not overwhelming flavors of earth and wood. Freshness? Without a doubt - bright acidity and mineral tones carry the day. Drink now? Happily - you will not be disappointed. Collectible? You bet - this wine is built upon vineyard pedigree that is second to none in Alavesa. Price? At $40 this is both the savvy collectors dream and a reasonable stretch for the budget conscious. Wines like this do not come around often - Enjoy!
  • Andrew Whiteley
    By: Andrew Whiteley
    K&L Staff Member
    A superb example of the 2010 vintage. The cool vintage leaves this wine feeling super bright and fresh. The higher acidity balances out the intense dark cherry and purple fruit profile and highlights the tremendous minerality in the wine. The French and American oak regimen delivers a powder keg of spices, vanilla, cedar box, and refined tannin. It is extremely elegant and graceful, but never shy. I hope to drink this bottling for years to come because it will no doubt be a prized collectors item. Unfortunately for me, that will be a massive challenge since it's hard to not drink all of it now. I must concur with Joe's assessment that at this price, it is one of the best Rioja's I've had all year (and I just got back from a week in Rioja!).
    Top Value!
  • Joe Bruno
    By: Joe Bruno
    K&L Staff Member
    The 2010 vintage was widely celebrated growing season in Rioja, and the respective Contino Reserva was a great example of this. A blend of predominantly Tempranillo (85%), with a splash of Graciano (10%), and the remainder being Mazuelo and Garnacha. Classic nose of dark cherry, stewed cranberries, and plum. Some prunes as well. A juiciness on the palate, with flavors of ripe red fruit, cherry in particular. Secondary notes of old leather accompanied by a dusty minerality. This wine would be a fantastic choice with food items that have a slight gaminess to them, such as rabbit, wild boar, or morcilla (Spanish blood sausage).
  • Joe Manekin
    By: Joe Manekin
    K&L Staff Member
    One of my all time favorite Rioja estates, Contino Reserva is always delicious: a lovely balance of ripe, forward, rich fruit, baking spices, savory tones and bright acidity. As wonderfully consistent as Contino is, it really excels in certain vintages - typically cooler years and vintages where acidities and tannins tend to be a bit higher than normal. Due to their protected, slightly warmer site, it is these vintages where Contino often produces something truly special, and 2010 is the most recent example. Aromatically a rich confit of cherries and plums, along with baking spices, leads to a palate that in short order delivers waves of rich, intense fruit, followed by the balancing acidity which refreshes and should allow for long ageing in bottle. Perhaps there is no Rioja that will appeal to as wide a range of wine drinkers as Contino. For the price, this may be the best Spanish wines I've tasted this year.


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