The story of Ortega Ezquerro begins with Quintín Ortega, who planted the family’s first vines back in the year 1896. At that stage, their founding father was a humble barrel-maker with ambitions, who as well as making barrels for the aging and shipping of wine, decided to go a step further by planting some vines. Later he refurbished an ancient wine cellar to turn it into a winery where he made and aged wine for his family.
Over the course of the intervening 120 years, the Ortega family have moved with the innovations. While in the past the main actor of Rioja were the barrels; where the wines matured gracefully, producing that characteristic silky texture and mellow fruit flavours. The grapes, the vineyards and the soil were of secondary importance, which may now seem a little backwards perhaps. At Ortega Ezquerro, led by Quitin Ortega’s great-grandson, Carmelo, the mission is to look after everything with a touch of modernity so that the fruit is given centre stage.
And this is why London is the perfect fit for the wines of Ortega Ezquerro. The UK has traditionally been a huge market for Rioja, perhaps because their wines match so well with our near-continuous Autumnal weather and pair so well with our favourite roast beef and lamb. London blends the traditional aspects of British cultural with a rampant desire for modern innovation; a perspective shared by Carmelo, who strives to make better wine year after year.
To find out more about Bodegas Ortega Ezquerro, pop in to your local Jeroboams store, or visit their website here.