Members who appreciate the best of Rioja will need no introduction to Jesús Madrazo, a pioneer formerly behind Contino and one of the region’s most inventive and talented winemakers. In the 1970s, Jesús launched the first single-vineyard Rioja and he remains one of the most inventive and talented winemakers in the region. I am delighted to offer members Jesús’ wine once again, the sixth vintage under his own name and by far the best he has crafted. Num. IV is a richly flavoured, sensuous and spicy Rioja, and I recommend it highly.
Order by midday on Friday 15th December
Aged in a mixture of US and French oak, the wine is predominantly a traditional blend, with tempranillo leading the way (82%) alongside garnacha (10%), graciano (2%) and maturana (4%). Unusually, however, there is also some merlot to complete the blend (2%).
Jesús explains his philosophy: ‘This year I introduced some maturana back into the blend which added a balanced tannic character and a bright freshness. I am still using some of my friend, Barbara Palacios's merlot (although just 2% this year and I still cannot mention it on the label!), and the sweet tannin that it brings to the mix, balancing, together with the warmth of garnacha, the rusticity of graciano. As a result, my 2020 vintage is clean and bright with an intense cherry colour. A powerful nose of red fruits, aromatic bush herbs with mint chocolate and spicy notes (clove/cinnamon) and in the mouth, it is fresh with intense fruit flavours and very good acidity. The oak is well balanced and delivers a tight but silky smooth, long finish. This is my fifth vintage and one that will develop beautifully over the next 5 years.