To produce the Rioja Reserva “Coto de Imaz” El Coto, the grapes were sorted, destemmed and crushed. Fermentation took place in temperature-controlled stainless-steel tanks at 22-27°C, with maceration for around 18 days and frequent pump overs. After malolactic fermentation in tank, the wines were transferred to new, 225-litre American oak barrels where they were aged for 18 months before the final blend was assembled and bottled. After this, the wine was aged for a further 18 months in bottle before release.
In Rioja Alavesa, El Coto de Rioja has vineyards in Elvillar de Álava, Yécora and Oyón. Most of them are old vineyards, sheltered by the Sierra de Cantabria and divided into small plots of land, as is traditionally representative of the entire region. El Coto’s Rioja Alta vineyard is located in Cenicero, at high altitudes that provide long hours of sun exposure.
El Coto was founded in 1970 in Rioja Alavesa and has grown from modest beginnings into one of the best known Rioja producers. Today El Coto has over 700 hectares of vineyard in production across the three Rioja DOCa sub-zones of Rioja Alta, Rioja Alavesa and Rioja Oriental. They also source grapes from all three areas, but mostly from Rioja Alavesa. Head winemaker César Fernandez oversees production, starting with hand picking into 350 kilogram crates to ensure the grapes arrive at the winery in pristine condition. Modern and intelligently designed, the emphasis in the winery is on temperature control and gentle handling of the grapes.