8 de mayo de 2013

Rioja's Historic Wineries - Bodegas Martínez Lacuesta

Don Félix Martínez Lacuesta, born in Haro in 1873, studied law at Madrid University and was to become a well-known politician, being appointed President of the Diputación Provincial de Logroño and Civil Governor of Teruel and Zaragoza. A public benefector, who founded the "Amigos de Haro" (Friends of Haro) and was President of the Asociación Nacional de Vinicultores, he never lost his love for his native Rioja, and in 1895, at the age of twenty-one, founded the firm of Martínez Lacuesta, which remains in the family.
The firm began exporting its wine, mainly to South America, establishing an office in Havana in 1902. In 1937 it embarked on the production of a vermouth and has been supplying wines to Iberia Airlines - for which it is perhaps best known abroad - for more than thirty years.

It possessed no vineyards of its own, and the wine was bought in, mainly from local cooperatives, for blending and maturation. It still operates from the original bodega, with its arched entrance, in the heart of Haro.

Some of the red wine proceeded from vineyards in the region of Hormejilla to the south-east of Haro, which produced much of the Garnacho grown in the Rioja Alta. For this reason, it rapidly acquired a brick-red colour. In general the wines were fruity and full-bodied in character. Those of which the Bodega were proudest were the red reservas of 1958, 1964 and 1970, and the robust "Campeador" of the 1973 and 1976 vintages. Martínez Lacuesta also produced a lighter "Clarete Fino" made with 80 per cent Garnacho, a range of white wines, including a "Reserva Especial" matured in cask for four yeats, and a young rosé.

Wines tastes:
Martínez Lacuesta 1958 Reserva Especial - 92/100 p. April 2013.

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