Producer Spotlight - CVNE


Rioja’s Traditional Innovators

CVNE, Compañia Vinicola del Norte de España, known as “Coonay” to its friends, will be pretty familiar to many Rioja drinkers. And wines like their evergreen 'Imperial Reserva' are, to many, what Rioja is really all about. Back in the late 1800's they were one of the bodegas that helped put Rioja, as a whole, on the map and traditional values run right through their veins. But throughout they've constantly innovated and adapted and can't be accused of living in the past.


A little bit of history...
The rise to prominence of Rioja was down to a combination of the phylloxera epidemic devastating the vineyards of Bordeaux and railways arriving in Spain. Brothers Eusebio and Raimundo Real de Asúa, the founders, took advantage by building a winery near the railway in Haro which allowed the, then disease free, wines of Rioja to be redaily distributed to a thirsty world struggling to keep supplied with Claret.
Being in at the start of things certainly paid dividends. As well as going on to be one Rioja's major players, CVNE's interests these days extend right across northern Spain. The company remains in family hands and today's CEO, Victor Urrutia is a descendent of the founding Asúa brothers.


Imperial - the jewel in the crown
Imperial Reserva and Gran Reserva are probably CVNE's most recognized wines. It's been around since 1920 and takes its name from an early bottling run done for the British in imperial pint bottles. The wines are only made in years where the harvest is deemed good enough and they're vinified at the original winery in Haro and then aged in a mix of French and American oak prior to bottling.

Contino - the first single estate Rioja
Single estate wine - ie where all the fruit in a given wine is grown in one particular estate - was, until 1973 when Viñedos del Contino was set up, unknown in Rioja. CVNE wanted to


introduce the idea of terroir to which they did with Contino and the 62 hectares of the estate's vines in Rioja Alavesa. Originally considered pretty cutting edge for the region, Contino is now an established and well regarded label in its own right.

Monopole - one of Spain's oldest brands
They claim it to be Spain's oldest white wine brand, first appearing around the start of the 1900s, but the current Monople line up is a very contemporary incarnation. Made at the original Haro winery they also represent some of the best value whites and rosés from Rioja.

Why not take a closer look at our CVNE range here.....

Our Range