Nivarius Tempranillo Blanco
Tempranillo Blanco, a genetic mutation of a single red vine discovered in 1988, makes a fresh, unctuous and perfectly ripe wine that is lively to drink.
The 15 year old vines are grown on north-facing site at 800 metres on a mixture of ferrous clay, with calcareous clay and a sandy component of degradation, giving grapes an agility, depth and versatility in the wine. The wine is made from 95% Tempranillo Blanco, with 5% of Malvasía riojana.
After harvesting at the time of optimal aromatic maturation, the grapes are light pressing in the absence of oxygen and fermented in stainless steel tanks at low temperature to preserve aromas. Subsequent aging is on fine lees for four months in steel tanks and 3500 ltr French oak barrels where the lees are stirred three times a week to give the wine more broadness on the palate.
91 points – Tim Atkin (2020 vintage)
Bodegas Nivarius is the only winery in La Rioja to produce solely white wines. Its 11ha of vineyards dedicated to Tempranillo Blanco is the largest planting of this varietal in the world.
Integrated farming is used throughout the estate, chemical products are avoided and they are waiting organic certification for their vineyards.
Good intensity in the nose, hints of fennel and stone fruits accompanied by a slight aroma of white flowers and subtle mineral notes. The complex palate has a very rounded feel with a final crispness that lengthens the palate to a long spicy aftertaste.
“Less exotic than some interpretations of the variety, it’s sappy, stony and engaging, with citrus and pink grapefruit flavours and some lees-derived texture. Refreshing and stylish.” TA
About the Producer
Nivarius translates as ‘ice house’ or ‘snow-drift’ and references the common sight in the vineyards in winter. The name Nivei means ‘snow’. Bodegas Nivarius is the only winery in La Rioja to produce solely white wines. Its 11ha of vineyards dedicated to Tempranillo Blanco – a genetic mutation of a single red vine discovered in 1988 – is the largest planting in the world.
Based in Nalda, 17km from Logroño, the La Nevera and Valdecabos vineyards are north facing and 800m above sea level. This aspect and height gives cooler than average temperatures and helps produce highly aromatic, fresh and fruity grapes.
Navarius is dedicated to showcasing and restablishings Riojas more unusual grapes. Winemaking is dedicated to preserving the characteristics of the different varietals. To prevent oxidation during pressing, a membrane is used to cover the grapes throughout. Each block is vinified separately, with maceration times and fermentation temperature adjusted to squeeze the most varietal expression from the grapes.