2018 Olivier Rivière Mirando al Sur09986
WINEMAKER: Olivier Rivière
VARIETAL: Viura, Malvasía, Garnacha Blanca
REGION: Rioja, SP
"Mirando al Sur is made from Olivier’s oldest vines of Viura located near the village of Labastida in Rioja Alavesa. It is named Miranda al Sur (Looking South) due to the fact that it is aged in used Sherry butts after whole cluster fermentation in oak vats. Harder to place in a Burgundian context due to the impact of the biologic aging of this cuvée, the wines of Jura might be a better analogy for this wine. This is a very special wine indeed !" - Andrew Guard
Olivier, as you might guess, is not Spanish but French. He was born and raised in Cognac, studied enology (with an emphasis on biodynamic farming practices) in Bordeaux and gained practical experience there and in Burgundy. The list of estates where he has worked is impressive by anyone’s standards from the most dedicated fans of natural wines (Domaine de Chassorney) to ultra-traditionalists (Domaine Leroy.) When his plans to set up a domaine in Fitou fell through, Olivier decided to spend a few years consulting in Spain, and he’s never left.
Coming from France, Olivier has an innate sense of terroir. Unlike most of his peers in Rioja, he bases his cuvées not on political boundaries or the length of barrel ageing but on terroir. He believes in a quality hierarchy inspired by Burgundy with generic appellation and Village wines at the base and Premier and Grand Cru wines at the top.