"I cannot think of another Rioja at this price level that offers this much character and fruit" were the words of Robert M. Parker Jr. when writing about Cortijo. Rioja is Spain's most prestigious wine region and for younger or neophyte wine drinkers who want to learn more about this magical, storybook wine region, its grapes and its wines. The Philosophy of Cortijo is very simple yet very effective: to make better wine, you need to harvest better grapes. Cortijo improves the quality of its wines by doing a better job in the vineyards. Rather than building a chateau or a beautiful tasting room, Cortijo pays to take care of the only meaningful ingredient, the grapes. Beginning with the 2009 vintage, Cortijo is made with estate-owned grapes. The goal with Cortijo is to show a pure, youthful expression of Rioja Alta. Cortijo is a sort of “non-profit organization”. It is very difficult to find such a pure expression of Rioja at this price point.