Arínzano: Presenting Navarra Wines in the best light

Navarra Do region's Hacienda de Arinzano Rose and Chardonnay
Recently I joined a twitter wine tasting showcasing the incredible wines of Arínzano, a winery located in the Navarra Do region of Spain. The wines sampled were their Hacienda de Arínzano Rosé and Chardonnay.

Arínzano is the first winery in Northern Spain and the Navarra DO region to receive the Pago classification. A Pago is a designation awarded to individual vineyards or wine estates. Furthermore, regulations require that the winery must only utilize their own estate-grown grapes for the wines they create. The Pago wines sampled were Arinzano’s Rosé and Chardonnay.

The Arínzano winery is located in Northeastern Spain between Rioja and Bordeaux. The original estate, known as the Señorío de Arínzano Estate, dates back to the 11th century. This estate lay dormant for approximately two centuries until 1988 when Arínzano was rediscovered and new vines were planted. Completion of the new winery occurred in 1998. Arínzano received its Pago designation in 2007. Today Arínzano consists of 355 hectares with 128 hectares dedicated to the cultivation of Pago vineyards.

Arínzano’s mission merges the ancient part of the world, the terroir with modern viticulture and vinification techniques. Combining the quality of the winemaking equipment, vineyard practices, and the terrain so they work together, creates a unity reflected in every wine produced by the Arínzano winery.

Arínzano utilizes sustainable practices and is the only Spanish winery certified by the World Wildlife Fund. The winery’s goal is the conservation and rebuilding of the natural environment. This is done through organic viticulture, using certified environmental materials and a natural wastewater filtration system.

Navarra Rosé:

Beginning with the 2016 Hacienda de Arínzano Rosé of Tempranillo, I found a very vibrant, complex and textured wine with a deep ruby color. The complexity allows the wine to be paired with a variety of foods. I see the Rosé accompanying a steak barbecue. The wine emits flavors of strawberry and watermelon with a nice spicy zing on the finish. The minerality and acidity are perfectly balanced. The grapes for this wine come from a Rosé dedicated vineyard and macerate for 6-8 hours giving the wine more skin contact thus more color.

Navarra Chardonnay:

Looking at Spanish wines we do not typically think of Chardonnay but this grape is well known in the Navarra region. It is the primary white grape grown in the region.

Most impressed was the 2014 Hacienda de Arínzano Chardonnay. The wine can be described as a new world style with the flavor profile of the old world. This Chardonnay is elegant revealing flavors of lemon curd, pineapple, apple and a hint of honey. The Chardonnay’s viscosity is marvelous. There are hints of spice on the finish. This is not your butterball Chardonnay but rather it is a wine that ranks up there with some of the best Burgundian styled wines. Like the Rosé, the wine exhibits a zing of spice on the finish.

Most notably the wine sees 40% Malolactic fermentation in second used French oak barrels. The wine then ages for 12 months in 30% new French oak and 70% 2-year used French oak.

Both of the Hacienda de Arínzano wines are superb and priced at $20. In the case of the Chardonnay, its pricing ranks with those in the $30 to $50 range.

One will not be disappointed with either of the Hacienda de Arínzano Rosé or Chardonnay.  I am looking forward to experiencing more of the Arínzano wines since they struck a chord with me.

Note: Common to the wine industry, this writer received hosted wine samples from the Navarra region. While it has not influenced this review, the writer believes in full disclosure.