A favorite among Rioja fans, the 2012 Vina Ardanza is a beautiful wine that shows the more refined and elegant side of Rioja. As many Rioja fans are aware, La Rioja Alta is a fantastic address and one of the leading names in Haro. The Vina Ardanza this vintage comes to a blend of 78% Tempranillo from vineyards in Cenicero and Fuenmayor with 22% Grenache from Rioja Oriental that are about 30 years old. It's an incredibly bright and complex wine with intense spices and ripe fruits all in perfect balance that has a ton of early appeal while still being structured, all for a great price. This wine proves that Rioja is still one of the top sources for old-world values that further carry your dollar. We have a few cases arriving later this week, and after just tasting a bottle yesterday, it's a no-brainer buy that we highly recommend for old world and Rioja buffs.
Wine Advocate (Luis Guttierez) 94 points! "Garnacha is an important component in the 2012 Viña Ardanza Reserva, where it represents 20% of the blend (the rest is, of course, Tempranillo). 2011 was a difficult vintage for Garnacha, so Viña Ardanza was not produced that year and they jumped from 2010, which had the mention "Selección Especial," to 2012, where it returns to the regular Reserva. The wine is a prototype of polished and aged Rioja with a ruby color with some orange and a developed nose with subtle aromas of decayed leaves, sweet spices and some cherries in liqueur even, quite complex and harmonious. The palate is velvety but rich, with resolved tannins and a fine chalky mouthfeel, sleek and elegant, terribly balanced. The flavors are pure and defined, and there is an overall sense of harmony that I like very much. Brilliant Ardanza! They produced no less than 600,000 bottles of this wine, which is remarkable. It has been in bottle since March 2016, so it's very approachable but should also age nicely in bottle. Drink or keep."
Decanter 94 points! "Warming, nutty, complex Rioja with layers of fruit and a softness of dark cherry fruit on the palate. Soft tannins and elegantly poised with a long, savoury finish"
James Suckling 95 points! "Traditional and beautiful in character with plum, balsamic, orange-peel and leather aromas and flavors. It’s medium-to full-bodied with creamy texture and a long, intense aftertaste. Drink or hold"