Guelbenzu - Boutinot

Meet the Producer

Established since the mid-nineteenth century, Guelbenzu built a new winery in Vierlas, in 2001. With just 46 hectares of vineyard in the Queiles Valley, their Lombana estate has stony soils with good drainage supporting low yields. The nearby Mount Moncayo and north wind creates perfect growing conditions for grapes - with high temperature differences between day and night, and protection from excessive moisture around the vines.

Guelbenzu left the Navarra appellation to follow their desire to make wines more representative of the unique terroir - as such the wines are labelled 'Vino de la tierra Ribera del Queiles'. The Ribera del Queiles appellation was created in 2003 at the request of Guelbenzu and it covers an area south of the river Ebro, between Navarra, Rioja and Aragon - in fact, just 500m from the border with Navarra. Production is centred around Tempranillo, Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Graciano and Merlot, with Garnacha also permitted.

A Note on Sustainability

For several years, Guelbenzu have maintained a vegetal cover in the majority of the vineyards in order to improve biodiversity and take advantage of the useful fauna that preys on different pests. Likewise, they avoid strong soil erosion in vineyards with large slopes when heavy rains occur. Environmentally friendly fertilization are used to replace "traditional fertilizers" by a total foliar fertilization program. This allow them to reduce their carbon footprint considerably and avoid possible contamination of aquifers and nitrogen fertilizers are never used in order to protect aquifers.

Although not certified organic, the micro climate at the Guelbenzu winery and vineyards allows them to achieve excellent quality grapes with no need to use fungicides. Good weather, good soil and the cold wind called “cierzo” that blows constantly in this area, that dries the vines, and helps to avoid diseases usually caused by excess humidity.

In addition the social, economic and governance dimension of the Sustainable Wineries for Climate Protection certification applies to Guelbenzu.

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