Javier Arizcuren comes from a family of winegrowers from Quel, in La Rioja Baja. An architect by trade, among his projects are the Marqués de Terán and the Finca Los Arandinos wineries and, more recently, the restoration of the 16th century historic caves and the 19th century building complexes at the Conde de los Andes wineries in Ollauri.
2009, after studying viticulture and oenology at the University of La Rioja and making various trips to national and international wine regions, he began to make a small amount of wine in the basement of the family home.
In 2011 he took over the family farm and began to show his potential and the differential character of wines from Quel.
Of all the vineyards that make up the family viticulture heritage, only those plots with greatest viticulture potential are included in the Arizcuren project. These are plots between 30 and 120 years old, mainly conducted in the Gobelet system with optimum soil, altitude and orientation characteristics for vine cultivation.
These plots are worked organically, free from herbicides, pesticides and synthetic fertilizers. At the end of the cycle, a harvest date is chosen which differs from year to year, depending on when the grapes reach the maximum balance between fruit, acidity, polyphenol charge, etc.
The bunches obtained happen to be a kind of dietary in which one can read the ups and downs of the climate that have made them grow and mature.
Grapes are carefully selected from the vineyard and transported in plastic boxes to ensure maximum integrity is preserved before they enter the processing tanks, thus completing a whole year’s work.
Before and After
These two aerial views from 1956 and 2004 reflect the progressive abandonment that the vineyard in the area has experienced. In the first image, it can be seen how the vineyard occupied almost all the cultivable plots. With the passage of time, the farmers began moving these vineyards to more fertile and lower altitude areas. In addition, the traditional varieties of the area gave way to exclusively Tempranillo plantations. Arizcuren seeks to reverse the process; trying to preserve the heritage of winemaking tradition in the area and to exalt the peculiarities that this land bestows upon Rioja wine.