To produce the Rioja Crianza “Xtrème” Ecológico Bodegas LAN, the Tempranillo grapes were sorted twice – first by bunch and then by individual berry to ensure that only those in pristine condition made it into the final wine. Fermentation with native yeasts took place in cone-shaped tanks and lasted for two to three weeks with regular pump overs to extract the perfect levels of colour and flavour. After fermentation, the wine was transferred to new French oak barrels where it underwent malolactic fermentation and 14 months ageing.
The Tempranillo grapes for the ‘Xtrème” Ecológico come from the ‘Mantible Ecológico’ parcel within the famed Viña Lanciano vineyard – a prime site within Rioja Alta, located on a meander of the River Ebro. The five-hectare, organically farmed plot overlooks the ruins of the Roman bridge of Mantible and sits at 400 metres above sea level with an east-west aspect. Soils are composed of sandy loam and pebbles and all of the grapes are hand harvested.
Founded in 1972, Bodegas LAN is situated in the heart of Rioja Alta. Though a relatively young Rioja house, Bodegas LAN has gained a reputation for the excellent quality of its wines. This quality is derived from the grapes they work with, grown in their spectacular Viña Lanciano vineyard and other prime vineyard sites in Rioja Alta and Alavesa, and from winemaker María Barúa’s great attention to detail in the winery. Viña Lanciano is one of largest and most striking single-vineyard sites in Rioja Alta, encircled by a meander of the Ebro river. The vineyard’s poor, stony soils and old vines, up to 60 years of age, are both conducive to low yields of very concentrated fruit. The site is divided into 24 plots of different soils and aspects and these are matched to the different grape varieties: Tempranillo, Graciano, Garnacha and Mazuelo.