Urbina Reserva Especial 2006 has been placed by Tim Atkin MW in Rioja Reserva of the Year 2019 and again in 2020, scoring it at 96 points. It is featured alongside some notable fine Riojas such as Muga Selección Especial Reserva 2015 and 2016 (which we also happen to sell!)
To quote Tim… “If you love mature, traditionally made Rioja, this will put a smile on our face and a song on your lips. Made from Tempranillo plus 5% Graciano and Mazuelo, it has the freshness and elegance that you’d expect from the cooler Cuzcurrita zone, spicy French and American oak, fine grained tannins and palate-caressing strawberry sweetness.”
We think it has exquisite and complex aromas of black fruit, leather and cigar box, which lead you into layers of silky blackberry, with a hint of strawberry, fruit flavours that have been aged to perfection. On a par with a Gran Reserva; this is a wine of great finesse representing very good value for a Rioja Reserva of the Year!
**Update February 2022**
Just over 3 years since we wrote this Blog Post and Tim Atkin MW has just released his Rioja Report 2022 in which Urbina Reserva Especial 2006 is named as a Reserva of the Year for the fourth consecutive year with 96/100 points. This must be something of a record. Tim now assesses this wine as drinking through to 2026.
Decanter Magazine Rioja Guide 2022 – The Wines that made Rioja famous – assesses this wine as Highly Recommended with 94 points; “A must for lovers of old-style Rioja”
This is a beautiful mature Rioja with superb fruit balance and it offers brilliant value at £19.95.
About the Bodega
This wine comes from a family-owned, Single Estate, around the village of Cuzcurrita, situated in the north-west point area of Rioja Alta and therefore at the limit of vine production. Here the climate is influenced by the cooler Atlantic weather systems which results in a longer, more gradual ripening period and grapes that tend to show freshness, structure and intensity. The magic of this area is that it makes wines that are amongst some of the longest lived in Rioja. Bodegas Urbina is run by Pedro (Senior) and his two sons Pedro and Angel Benito Urbino.
Their 75 hectares of vineyards, mostly planted with Tempranillo, have been carefully nurtured by the family for four generations and they use organic fertilisers, indigenous yeasts and avoid the use of weedkillers and pesticides. The vines are grown mainly in the bush form and yields are kept low. The grapes for this wine come from 40+ year old vines and are hand-harvested and selected. It has spent 24 months in American and French oak barrels before 48 months in bottle in the Bodega. Only 66,000 bottles of this wine are produced.