THE HISTORY OF MONTECILLO
Founded in 1874, we are the oldest winery of Fuenmayor, and the third oldest of La Rioja. We have been elaborating wine for more than 140 years.
Founders of the modern La Rioja
At the dawning of the modern La Rioja, in the second half of the nineteenth century, a handful of enthusiasts firmly believed in the Bordeaux elaboration methods and started to elaborate wine with the with the intention to go beyond the limits of the domestic market. One of the first to do this was Don Celestino Navajas Matute, of a family deeply rooted in Fuenmayor, who found his winery in 1874 in Fuenmayor.
Don Celestino had great plans for the future: he sent his sons, Alejandro and Gregorio, to study oenology in Bordeaux. Over the years, the brothers created the company Hijos de Celestino Navajas, with the intention to continue with the work of their father.
The next generation, embodied by José Luis Navajas – son of Alejandro –, who also followed his education abroad, this time in Beaune (Burgundy) and in Penedès. In 1943, José Luis becomes the manager of the family winery, and decisively boosts the quality and success of its wines.
In this period when innovative techniques are introduced in La Rioja like cold stabilization, very characteristic of our winery. And it is also the moment when for posterity the name Montecillo gets adopted.
The founding family passes the business over to another great wine family, Osborne
José Luis Navajas did not have offspring and decided to leave his ancestors´ legacy in the best possible hands. That is how the relation with the other centenary winegrowing family, Osborne, was established, that acquired Montecillo in 1973.
A new winery
Since then, Osborne has enhanced the great virtues of the winery from Fuenmayor: the quality, the tradition and the expertise. The first important decision was the construction of new processing facilities, larger and more functional, between the villages Fuenmayor and Navarrete. It is the current winery Montecillo, meant for a careful winemaking and to elaborate long aged wines, an authentic flagship of our brand.
One of the essential milestones in recent history of the winery was the incorporation of Ganimede® tanks, which provide a more delicate, selective and efficient extraction of the aromatic components of the wine.
Another decisive aspect is the constant renovation of the stock of barrels, which today consists of more than 20.000 French and American oak barrels.
Fall in love again with the authentic
The classical range of Bodegas Montecillo is relaunched with the intention of making lovers of good wine, La Rioja and life, fall in lover all over again. The entire range changes its image, modernising and simplifying the message. And it launches a new age in its communication, with a new website and a new brand message: ``Fall in love again with the authentic``.