Palacios Remondo

While growing up in Alfaro, Álvaro Palacios witnessed the dumbing down of Rioja after the Civil War ended, where Tempranillo became all that was validated, and Rioja itself became a simple, price-oriented brand. Álvaro allows that the bad decision-making of the 80s and 90s was the result of a lack of confidence, and calls the focus on varietal Tempranillo 'viral - an invasion', particularly so on the soils below the river. 80% of the 23,000ha of Rioja Baja is planted to irrigated industrial Tempranillo: as Álvaro term it, 'artificial wine'. Under José Palacios, Palacios Remondo was a conventional Rioja of industrially-farmed Tempranillo expressed within the Crianza-Reserva-etcetera model of production. In the years under Álvaro's guidance, the vineyards and wines have undergone extraordinary change. Nowadays the vineyards are biodynamically grown low-crop organic plantings of local Garnacha genetics, with a scattering of Viura. Any Tempranillo in Palacios Remondo wines is purchased from good growers near Haro on the Ebro's north shore.

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