2000 Lopez de Heredia "Viña Tondonia" Gran Reserva Rosado Rioja
Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar
($30; a blend of 60% garnacha and 20% each of tempranillo and viura) Bright peach skin color. Red berries, pear and orange zest on the nose, with complicating notes of tarragon and salty minerals. Sweet red fruit flavors give way to muskier pear skin and almond in the middle palate, with a firm note of talc emerging on the back end. This dry, focused, serious pink wine finishes with strong grip and a lingering note of dried red fruit. Serve it with full-flavored food.
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
With the estate’s policy of holding the Rosada back, readers should note that the next scheduled release is not until 2017. The 2000 Tondonia Rosada Gran Reserva is completely sold out in the United States and the next is not due for several years. Anyway, it has a pale salmon hue. The nose is very complex for a rose with decayed rose petal and hints of nougat. The palate is very well-balanced with good weight and its searing, dry finish leaves you wanting more after the intriguing nose. Drink now if you are lucky to have some.
Lopez de Heredia truly follows the classic adage of the wine industry: "Sell no wine before its time!" The golden standard in traditional Rioja, this blend of 60% Garnacha, 30% Tempranillo and 10% Viura is made in the classic "clarete" style. The 2000 is the current release, having seen extensive aging in used American oak barrels, followed by more aging in their perfectly cool, damp, cobweb and mold covered cellar by the Río Ebre. Beautiful flavors of blood orange, berries, peach skin and almonds only begin to describe this wine, which also has a silken texture unlike any other rosé you have likely ever had. As ever, this is a true wine world original and a very special bottle of wine.