From the stable of Telmo Rodríguez, LZ is an extremely aromatic, floral Rioja with svelte tannins and beautiful balance. A winner.
From The Natty Boy
I doubt anyone has done more for the Spanish revolution of winemaking/wine production than Telmo Rodriguez. His family own the Remelluri winery (fantastic Rioja producer) and he has made his name travelling around Spain to regions such as Toro, the Gredos and Valdeorras, sourcing vineyards and producing a dizzying array of wines whilst training many of the up and coming winemakers. The idea of Bodega Lanzaga, which consists of 17ha of sublime vineyards acquired over the years, is to move away from the classic ageing distinctions of Rioja where the top wines are classified by extended oak ageing and the flavour/character this imparts, and a move toward a more Burgundian classification of vineyard at the core (this is a pretty common theme amongst the more interesting Spanish producers at the moment such as Comando G and Envinate). All farming is organic, with fermentation taking place in concrete and a short period of maturation, also in concrete. This is pretty much the antithesis of what we'd regard as classic Rioja, which has typically had this massive smack of American oak on it. The tradition has been to use high toast American oak which gives really prominent coconut and sweet fruited flavours to the wine (I always loved getting Rioja served blind in exams as it was so easy to pick!). Here the aromatics are really pretty and floral alongside orange rind and dark plum. This has a decent amount of Graciano in it, which is considered extremely high quality but is fickle to grow. The tannins are sublime. This is drinking so well now, I'd love to see how it developed in a bottle but fear I wouldn't be able to resist!