CVNE’s Contino Welcomes New Head Winemaker

Jorge Navascués
Jorge Navascués / Twitter

Contino, a single-vineyard estate winery in the heart of Rioja Alta and part of the CVNE group that also includes Viña Real, is undergoing a winemaker change. The 62-acre property, located just outside the hilltop village of Laguardia, is bidding adios to longtime winemaker Jesús de Madrazo; taking his place is Jorge Navascués, who has winemaking experience in nearby regions including Cariñena, Calatayud, Navarra and Somontano.

Madrazo and Navascués will work together on the frost-plagued 2017 vintage, after which Madrazo will leave Contino to work with his wife on a small family wine project.

In announcing the change, Victor Urrutia, CEO of CVNE, noted that Navascués has 19 years of winemaking experience and grew up in a winemaking family. “We are excited about Jorge joining our team. He … brings with him a wealth of experience” to Contino, which was founded in 1973.

In an email explaining the change, Urrutia said that he sought a new winemaker who is “experienced but young, driven and enthusiastic. Someone with respect for previous work and for the past, but with a clear desire to do new things. Also, someone with experience outside of Rioja,” which he suggested would help “avoid bias and bring a fresh, objective perspective to how we are working at Contino.”

Recently, Contino has released a number of wines rated in the “excellent” category by Wine Enthusiast, including the 2010 Reserva (92 points; $48), the 2011 Graciano (90 points; $140) and the 2011 Garnacha (90 points; $50). Contino is imported into the United States by Europvin USA.

Published on July 31, 2017
Topics: Latest News
About the Author
Michael Schachner
Spanish and South American Editor

Reviews wines from Argentina, Chile and Spain.

Michael Schachner is a New York-based journalist specializing in wine, food and travel. His articles appear regularly in Wine Enthusiast, where he is a longstanding contributing editor responsible for South America and Spain. Schachner reviews more than 2,000 wines annually for WE and regularly travels to Chile, Argentina and Spain to keep abreast of the constantly changing global wine map. Email:

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