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Bodegas RODA launches its first white wine: RODA I Blanco


  • The winery from Barrio de la Estación in Haro launches its first white wine after 35 years of experience in Rioja, a 2019 vintage wine from old Viura vineyards.


  • RODA I Blanco 2019 is made with three of the classic varieties of aged Rioja: mainly Viura and a small proportion of Garnacha Blanca and Malvasía de Rioja.


Botella de bebida

Descripción generada automáticamenteHaro, November 2022.- After 35 years of experience in Rioja knowing and exploring Tempranillo, Bodegas RODA launches its first white wine, under the name RODA I Blanco, from the 2019 vintage. It is a label that emerges after four years of testing and tastings, which have resulted in a wine for cellaring, gastronomic, with good acidity and, above all, very original.


RODA I Blanco 2019 comes from grapes from vines located in the headlands of the old vineyards located in the winery's surroundings; poor soils where some Viura, Garnacha or Malvasía de Rioja vines were planted, traditional Rioja varieties with which the great white classics of the Denominación de Origen Calificada are made.


The orography of the Haro area is made up of small hillocks of vines cultivated in all winds. The upper parts of the hillsides, heavily eroded by centuries of tillage, are very poor and do not adapt well to the Tempranillo variety. In the past, these hillsides were used to plant white varieties, more vigorous and productive than Tempranillo. They are small areas of several hundred vines, just what occupy the starkest soils.


The soils are formed by alternating sedimentary rocks of sandstone and limestone marl, and the sandstones are often visible in the headlands. These Viuras live directly on the Tertiary soil. Together with them, other varieties were planted, such as Malvasía de Rioja, Garnacha Blanca and some table wine, such as Calagraño and Moscatel, which in this case are discarded.


With a base of Viura and small proportions of Garnacha Blanca and Malvasía de Rioja, the must is macerated in French oak vats and then fermented in the same vat and in bocoyes, also made of French oak. It is in the latter that RODA I White is aged for 18 months, followed by another 18 months in the bottle before being released.


The idea of making a white wine in the style of RODA arose almost a decade ago, and during this time, the technical team has been working on the origin, profile and cellaring vocation of the wine, until the 2019 vintage provided the ideal conditions for making it and launching it on the market. During that year, the vineyard sprouted timidly, due to the winter drought. Fortunately, 2018 had been very rainy and there was moisture in the deep layers. It was a dry year but very kind to the vines, despite the high temperatures at the end of June that were repeated in July as well. But the resilience of the old vines resulted in excellent ripening and a magnificent vintage, with high quality and low production.


In short: a vintage with a result of excellence, perfect to achieve a white wine capable of growing in the bottle and becoming a classic, just as its "brothers" RODA, RODA I and CIRSION, the great reds of Bodegas RODA, already are.


RODA I Blanco 2019 is intense, full of details and nuances such as notes of grapefruit, quince or peach, which are accompanied by citrus and mineral hints and refreshing vegetal touches. With the wood perfectly assembled, the whole is elegant and serious. In the mouth, its volume and breadth stand out. Fruit notes of quince and peach and a mineral note from the limestone of the soil appear again. With a citrus finish, it is a perfect wine to accompany a whole meal and with a structure that augurs a long aging.


Agustín Santolaya, General Manager of Bodegas RODA, has been chosen Person of the Year 'Fuera de Serie' in the category Oenology

Agustín Santolaya, General Manager of Bodegas RODA and Bodegas LA HORRA, has been chosen Person of the Year 'Fuera de Serie 2014' in the category of Oenology. On November 27th, 2014 the awards were given to the winners in a ceremony that was held in Santa Coloma Palace in Madrid, the ceremony was hosted by the journalist Lara Siscar and ended with a cocktail in which wines RODA 2009 and CORIMBO I 2010 were served.


There are several reasons why the publication 'Fuera de Serie' has decided that the Person of the Year Award in the Category Oenology was given to Agustín Santolaya: in less than a quarter of century has made Bodegas RODA, in La Rioja, an international reference. Santolaya believes that the wine, as the art, must touch and he says that 'the wine becomes the only dynamic way to bottle the time'. He is General Manager of RODA (DOCa Rioja), a successful winery that two years after marketed its first vintage, it was catalogued as a benchmark. Only 18 years later and other projects, the wines of RODA, its brothers of Ribera del Duero (CORIMBO) and also its olive oils (DAURO from the Empordà and AUBOCASSA from Majorca) still occupy the top ten.


Santolaya explains his career: we are a wine-growing family from generations. We made young wine, that is something very traditional in La Rioja, and I began with the age of 16 years. I studied Agricultural Engineering and I had my own wine brand, at the same time I was a teacher and I worked as a consultant of vine-growing. And that was how I came to RODA: I was called as a consultant and I fell in love with the project. Just observing the sensibility of Mario Rotlland (owner of the winery), saying he had no hurry, but he wanted to make a wine of the great, when all businessmen demanded a positive exploitation in four years. And I stayed here.



At the end of the 1980's new things were afoot in the Spanish wine growing sector. A new generation of wine people was arriving on the scene in different wine regions. At this particular moment, Mario Rotllant and Carmen Daurella came to La Rioja, with the passionate commitment to create a project that would bring something new to the wine world. What better way to personalize a new project than to name it after the initials of Mario’s and Carmen’s surnames, RO-DA.


"In 1995, we observed that some vines were producing grapes with a flavour that was very different from that of other surrounding vines. Whilst the usual sensation on tasting a grape is one of fresh fruit, acidity and sweetness, we found that in these cases the sensation was one of fullness, volume, characteristics which were closer to actual wine tasting rather than grape-tasting. We established that by vinifying these grapes separately we would obtain hugely silky wines and could avoid having the wood steal a part of the richness of the fruit characters. In 1997 we made our first Cirsion, which was not released on to the market. We found that with a short ageing in barrel, it reached an incredible degree of silkiness and unparalleled fruit complexity. Each year, during the harvest, we go through some of our vineyards seeking out this curious natural rarity, and on one vine in a thousand these grapes are found and picked to make Cirsion. There is total respect for the concept of the vintage, wines from other years are never added to homogenise or freshen up a vintage. Wines bring out the very essence of their terroir, the vineyard, soil, climate, landscape."



We use old vines, as we consider that the balanced yields that they succeed in producing cannot be bettered, since the greater depth of their roots and the larger volume of soil explored by them reduce the effects of both drought and excessive rainfall. They also have the ability to bring greater complexity to the grapes and in turn to the wine.

We use three grape varieties:Tempranillo,Graciano and Garnacha.

TEMPRANILLO, has the potential to produce, on its own, wines of the highest rank in our area. It combines power and elegance and has an enormous range of aromas and flavours.

GRACIANO, is difficult to grow, has a very low pH, produces wines of deep colour with purple glints, fresh, spicy aromas, and blends very well with Tempranillo.

We grow GARNACHA in the southern most area of the Rioja in gravel soils at the highest altitudes, and we use it to blend with the other varieties.


The classic Rioja bush vine is made up of three irregular main branches growing directly from the soil and reaching up to 1 metre in height. When a branch breaks, through old age or because it is unstable, it is replaced by a new shoot from the trunk. It colonises perfectly the space around the vine in its three dimensions and enables the bunches to be extraordinarily well ventilated and spread out from each other. We consider that this is the best growing technique for our area.


Respect for the natural environment is an obsession in our vine-growing. Grass usually grows freely from the month of October until April and the vineyard borders are maintained with indigenous flora throughout the whole year to enable beneficial insects to complete their life cycle. Fertilising is kept down to a minimum, most of which comes in the form of manure. Fungal sprays are essentially in the form of sulphur and copper, avoiding where possible synthetic chemical products.


One of the most complex operations and one which requires the greatest effort is choosing which vineyard will go into RODA and on which day the picking should begin. Between the beginning of the ripening process and the end of the picking, more and more visits are made to each vineyard until these reach a frequency of three times a week. Detailed observations as to each symptom, textures, colours, the taste of the berries and their pips, together with the continual support of our laboratory, enable us to gain an approximate idea of the optimum time of ripeness.



A team of 40 harvesters, who return year after year, pick the grapes by hand, carefully placing them in 18kg crates from vines which have been judged to be at perfect readiness on that particular day. With rare exceptions, all the vineyards, whether they are our own or not, are harvested by our own pickers so as to have perfect control over the time of the picking and the selection of the bunches on the vines.

It is often the case that two separate pickings, even three, are carried out to ensure that the grapes that are brought in are perfectly ripe. The crates are brought to the bodega on pallets on trailers or in trucks, and once they are emptied, are meticulously washed before being sent to the next vineyard. The average yield per hectare is no more than 5,000 kg or 34 hectolitres.


Inside information

Bodegas Roda S.A., as part of its business strategy, has since 1998 drawn up a policy supporting scientific research, development and technological innovation as a means towards the continual improvement of its competitiveness and growth, the result of which has been the definition and development of successive tri-annual plans of research and development.


6 different wines with 52 vintages

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