Magnum Bottles from CVNE Imperial

CVNE (Compania Vinícola del Norte de Espana) is one of the most renowned and historic bodegas in Spain.  Founded in 1879, it has been run by the Real de Asua family for five generations.  CVNE now comprises four wineries: CVNE proper, Imperial, Vina Real and Contino.   The Imperial wines, first produced in the 20s, are classic and true Rioja and have long been considered a reference point in the world of Spanish wine.  The name was originally adopted after a special bottling for the English market in a bottle called ‘Pinta Imperial’ or ‘Imperial Pint’ (an imperial pint, half a liter approximately).
The Imperial Gran Reserva is only made in vintages of exceptional quality.  The grapes come from the best and oldest vines on the winery’s own estate as well as old vines from neighboring growers. They are hand harvested and then undergo a second manual selection in the cellar.  To ensure gentle handling, movement of grapes and juice through the winery happens by means of a gravity-based system, dispensing with the need for hydraulic pumps and hoses.
We have just received a library release of Imperial Gran Reserva magnums from vintages 2007, 2010 and 2011, direct from the winery.  They are in ready-to-drink form and while the ’07 should be drunk now the ’10 and ’11 have another ten years of aging potential.  Fyi, magnums are good for two to four people (depending on the capacity of you and your guests . . .) and make great table centerpieces for a special occasion.  We’re coming up on inauguration day . . . is that special enough?
CVNE 'Imperial' Gran Reserva Rioja 2007 (1.5L)
Retail Price: $189.97
Sale Price: $174.97
Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar, 93pts. – “Brilliant ruby-red. Complex, highly perfumed scents of red fruit preserves, vanilla, woodsmoke and sandalwood, with a sexy floral quality in the background. Quite concentrated for the vintage, offering sweet red and dark berry flavors firmed by a spine of minerality. Closes smooth, broad and spicy, with outstanding focus and fine-grained tannins. While one could enjoy this wine immensely right now, my guess is that it has at least a good decade-plus of life ahead of it.” (9/2014)
CVNE 'Imperial' Gran Reserva Rioja 2010(1.5L)
Retail Price: $189.97
Sale Price: $174.97
Wine Spectator *Top 100 of 2016, Highly Recommended* 94pts. – “This generous red shows a traditional character, with leafy, dried herb, tea and spice notes framing dried cherry, licorice and leather flavors. Firm tannins and balsamic acidity impart structure, and this shows plenty of depth, with a juicy, spicy finish. Drink now through 2025.” (6/2016)
CVNE 'Imperial' Gran Reserva Rioja 2011 (1.5L)
Retail Price: $189.97
Sale Price: $174.97
Wine Enthusiast, 97pts. – “This is a fabulous gran reserva from a very good but lightly heralded vintage. Aromas of spiced plum, black olive, fig, tobacco and cassis come together like a puzzle. A deep, pure palate shows near-perfect balance, while this tastes of plum, berry fruits and earthy spice. Smooth, elegant and chocolaty on the finish, this delivers all one can ask for from Rioja.” *Editors’ Choice* (2/2019)
Past Cellar Selections:
Beaux Freres Pinot Noir The Beaux Freres Vineyard 2018
Viña Real Rioja Gran Reserva – What were you doing in 1987?
Domaine Simon Bize 2018 – Value Burgundy
Saint-Préfert Chateauneuf-du-Pape 2018 - 96/97 Pts.
Roagna Rosso – A Concert Played by a Thousand Vines
Raul Perez – Wines with a Sense of Place
Domaine du Pelican – Burgundy Meets Jura
Viña Almaviva 2016 – #10 on Wine Spectator top 100
Vajra 2016 - Three Variations on Barolo
Montevertine – Chianti for Wine Geeks
La Rioja Alta “890” Gran Reserva Rioja 2004
Domaine Huët 2019 – Grand Cru from the Loire Valley
Shafer Vineyards – Relentless, One Point Five and Chardonnay
Paul Jaboulet – Majestic Wines from the Northern Rhone
Alion and Pintia – The Other Vega Sicilias
Three Oderros: for the Picnic Table, the Dinner Table and the Cellar
Castilla Ygay 2010 – at 98 pts a ‘First Growth’ Rioja
Burgundy with age from Jean Chauvenet

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