Rioja Reserva – 2014

Region: Spain - La Rioja


VALENCISO was born in 1998 when Luis Valentín and Carmen Enciso (Valen-Ciso, Val-en-THEECE-oh), Rioja natives with extensive experience in the region, joined their surnames to make a single wine in the winery of their dreams in La Rioja Alta.

Minority partners include former managers of Radoux, makers of the finest French oak barriques, and growers in the best areas of the Rioja Alta.

Valenciso’s objective is to produce a limited number of wines of the highest quality and authenticity. The flagship wine is released as Reserva. The very best Tempranillo grapes come from mature, low-yielding vineyards. Careful harvesting is timed to capture the intensity of the fruit, while avoiding over ripeness or excessive alcohol levels. Aromatic lift rather than physical weight – in the manner of French Burgundy and the greatest Riojas of the past – is the Valenciso ideal. Aging takes place in the finest cork-grade (flor) French oak barriques, one-third replaced each year. Time in oak depends upon vintage characteristics and is determined after exhaustive tasting. The Valenciso wines are balanced offering early accessibility, structure, fresh acidity and fruit intensity promising many years of bottle evolution.

Cement tanks are used for winemaking because they respect the vividness and contribute to the wine’s longevity. Aging in French oak barrels gives elegance and richness.


91 Points

A classic Tempranillo of Rioja character. Perfectly ripe black fruits, with toasty notes from the French oak. In the mouth it is suavely textured, well grained, with cherry and some more savoury notes to finish. 2022 – 2034

Decanter, November, 2021
93 Points

I tasted again the red 2014 Reserva, which seems to have integrated in bottle since I tasted it some 16 months ago. It’s a lighter expression of Valenciso that is developing more complex aromas, and the acidity and tannins are slowly being resolved. They say it’s the most modern among the classics and the most classic among modern Reservas. 2020 – 2026

© Wine Advocate, October, 2020