Marqués de Cáceres: ¡Salud!

It seems for many wine-making families, wine rather than blood flows through their veins. This is especially true for the wineries Vineyard Brands imports considering they are all family owned, including Marqués de Cáceres.

The Forners are a 5th generation wine family who have revolutionized wine growing in the Rioja region of Spain. Founded in 1970, the story of Marqués de Cáceres starts much earlier, in 1920, when Enrique's father and grandfather owned "Vinicola Forner," in Valencia, Spain. 

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The Spanish Civil War forced the Forner's into exile in France. Although the family was forced to leave their home, they were immersed in one of the oldest wine growing regions in the world. While in France, the Forners purchased two châteaux in the Haut Médoc- the Bordeaux region. These two châteaux- Château Camensac and Château Larose-Trintaudon- are now recognized as two of the finest properties in Bordeaux. 

When Enrique Forner returned to his Spanish homeland he was armed with a wealth of wine knowledge and experience. He had learned from the best in France and was ready to establish a bodega. He selected the finest viticultural area Cenicero in Rioja Alta. In gently rolling hills bordered by the Ebro River, the region is as beautiful as it is fertile. 

Forner's first Rioja red wine was a 1968 vintage. Two years later Bodegas Marqués de Cáceres was officially founded, with the reputed oenologist from Bordeaux, Emile Peynaud, as wine consultant. 

Enrique Forner's impact can be seen throughout the Spanish wine industry we know today. Influenced by his time in France, Forner introduced the system of estate-bottling by limiting his source of grapes to those of the immediate area - a departure from the local practice of using more widespread sources of supply. He established the Union Viti-Vinicola, together with a selection of growers who supply the Bodegas Marqués de Cáceres with grapes; this restricted source of grapes gives a consistent style and character to the wine. He along with six other bodegas, the "Magnificent 7", was instrumental in reforming the rules of the Rioja D.O. (Denominación de Origen). This ensures quality and high standards for the wines of Rioja. 

Marqués de Cáceres gained its distinctive name from the actual Marqués de Cáceres in 1974 who became a founder-shareholder of the Bodega. The marquesado has its origins in the XVIII century and was granted by the King of Spain to the Captain of the Royal Spanish Navy Don Juan Ambrosio García de Cáceres and Montemayor in gratitude for his outstanding services to the Crown in the war of the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies.

Enrique Forner retired in 2007, and his daughter, continuing the family legacy, took over control of the bodega. Marqués de Cáceres celebrated its 40th anniversary in 2010 as a leading brand in Spain and around the world and is available in more than 120 markets.

The Cáceres portfolio has grown extensively since that first red in 1968. Wines include: 

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Marqués de Cáceres White is made from 100% Verdejo grapes from Rueda. Very fresh bouquet with citrus and floral notes. Deliciously refreshing in the mouth with pleasant vivacity and long-lasting flavours.

Marqués de Cáceres Antea Barrel Fermented White, produced from Viura grapes, with a small percentage of Malvasia. This fine wine is elegant and complex, with a bouquet of ripe apples, and a hint of vanilla in the rich fruit.

Marqués de Cáceres Satinela is a delicate, fruity, slightly sweet white wine, made from Viura grapes, with a small percentage of Malvasia. The grapes were harvested late in their maturity, very ripe and concentrated. Aromas of apricot, peach, and acacia flowers.

Marqués de Cáceres Deusa Nai Albariño from Rias Baixas. The name Deusa Nai means “mother goddess”, referring to the bounty of the earth. A fresh and fragrant bouquet with mineral notes and a hint of grapefruit and mandarin orange. With refreshing acidity and good length, ready to be enjoyed now but will continue to develp in bottle.

Marqués de Cáceres Rosé is dry, very fruity, fresh and light, with a delicate pink color. It is made from Tempranillo grapes (80%) and Garnacha (20%) selected from the highest slopes of the Rioja Alta. It is cold-fermented and undergoes a brief maceration, which imparts to the wine its pink color.

Marqués de Cáceres Excellens Sauvignon Blanc, Rosé and Red A selection of wines tailored to on-premise accounts with limited production, sourced from premium vineyards in Rioja for the Red and Rosé, and in Rueda for the Sauvignon Blanc.

Marqués de Cáceres Crianza, noted for its spicy varietal character, its balance and lingering finish, is made from 85% Tempranillo grapes, with the balance split between the Graciano and Garnacha Tinta varieties. The wine is aged in small barrels of French oak for 12 months and in the bottle for at least 14 months.

Marqués de Cáceres Reserva Tempranillo (85%), and Graciano and Garnacha Tinta (15%). The grapes are selected form vineyards that are well exposed to the sun, and from a considerable portion of older vines, that produce lower yields. The Reservas are aged in barrels from central France for 22 months, followed by 2 years or more in bottle. It is made only in the best vintages, a rich and velvety wine with great depth.

Marqués de Cáceres Gran Reserva from old vines, Tempranillo (85%), and Graciano and Garnacha Tinta (15%), aged up to 26-28 months in oak and up to 4 years in the bottle. Produced only from vintages classed as “excellent” or “very good”.

Marqués de Cáceres MC 100% Tempranillo, this choice wine is made from a selection of grapes grown in vineyards of very limited production. Aged in new French oak for 15 months, the MC has a fresh bouquet that opens out with notes of blackberries, violet and delicate spices. Rich and full in the mouth with good structure, wrapped in delicious, rounded tannins.

Marqués de Cáceres Gaudium (Latin: “satisfaction, joy, pleasure of the senses”) is made exclusively from Rioja’s finest vineyards that are planted with old vines which produce a very limited yield. A rigorous selection of the best grape varieties - 95% Tempranillo and 5% Graciano - are handpicked to ensure optimum maturity. Aged in new French oak barrels for 18 months and a minimum of 24 months in bottle, thus achieving the elegance which characterizes this great wine.