Throughout its over 373 years of existence, the deeds and events spanning the winery’s trajectory from its beginnings until today far exceed what we can possibly single out. The following selection highlights the key moments which have influenced the winery’s course and garnered its international renown.
Marks the beginning of the Chivite family’s tie with the wine world. This is attested by a legal document in which Juan Chivite Frías and his sister-in-law requested a mortgage for 100 ducats on the estate, which is describes in these terms: “…the winery which owns up to 150 wine vats and is situated adjacent to the house of Pedro Ximénez and to Calle Real and Camino de la Carrera on the other, with timber and a vineyard of thirty laborer’s working days on carrera Cascante…”.
In the second half of the 19th century Claudio Chivite began exporting his wine to France using to his advantage the oidium plague that was devastating French vineyards. He saw the timing was right to develop exportation and set up the triangular trade route Cintruénigo-Bayonne-Bordeaux. These recorded burgeoning transactions attest to Chivite’s early comercial vocation, and they allowed him to become one of the oldest exporters in Spain, logged as number 120 within Spain’s General Registrar of Exporters.
Julián Chivite Marco undertook significant renovations of the family business, launched its first brands, and set up one of the first bottling plants of all of Spain.
In commemoration of the 125th anniversary of the family winery’s first export to Bordeaus in 1860, the wine Colección 125 Aniversario Gran Vino 1981 was released, spawning the current Colección 125 Aniversario range.
To celebrate the event, wine and fashion came together at Madrid’s Puerta de Moros Palace to hold its international launching. Chefs Juan Mari Arzak (2 Michelin stars) and Michel Troisgros (3 Michelin stars) designed and created the menu for a special dinner which included as the finishing touch a wine-inspired fashion show featuring designs by Agatha Ruiz de la Prada, Sybilla and Madrid’s Center of Fashion Studies.
Was the year in which Denis Dubourdieu (1949 – 2016), the father of modern oenology and creator of the mythical Chivite Colección 125 Blanco and of the late harvest Vendimia Tardía, began working with Chivite. Both as Professor of Oenology at the University of Bordeaux’s Oenology Faculty and as General Director of the Institute of Vine and Wine Science of the same University, Denis Dubourdieu played an important role in the scientific community. Apart from the many scientific awards reaped throughout his lifetime, he was also named Chevalier of the Order of Agrarian Merit by the French government and was distinguished with the Legion of Honor. He managed his own family’s wine estates and also worked as a consultant for renowned wineries, Château d’Yquem and Château Cheval Blanc among others. He continued working with Chivite until his death in 2016.
At the inauguration of the Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum in Madrid, the new Chivite Colección 125 Reserva 1992 was launched at a dinner prepared by Juan Mari Arzak.
On occasion of the NATO Summit held in Madrid on July 8th, 1997, the Royal House selected the Chivite Colección 125 Blanco 1995 to be served at the gala supper offered by TM the Kings of Spain to the international heads of state present at the event.
On February 8th, 1998, to celebrate the inauguration of the Modern Art Museum in Stockholm, Sweden, designed by the prestigious Pritzker award architect Rafael Moneo, the guests enjoyed the Chivite Colección 125 Reserva 1994.
Chivite Colección 125 Blanco 1997 was chosen best white wine of the world by the magazine Sibaritas. In the blind tasting organized by the magazine, Spanish white wines were judged against a selection of the greatest whites of the world comprised by 23 wines.
The members of illustrious European houses and celebrities from round the world toasted with Chivite Colección 125 Blanco 2002 at the gala supper previous to the royal wedding of TM the Kings of Spain Felipe VI and Letizia Ortiz on May 21st.
Chivite Colección 125 Vendimia Tardía 1997 was officially selected for the banquet held in Oslo, Norway after the Nobel Peace Prize had been awarded on December 10th, 2010.
On the 4th of May, 2011, Robert Parker, the prestigious U.S. critic and founder of The Wine Advocate magazine, was awarded the “Great Cross of Civil Merit” in Madrid. During the meal in his honor the guests enjoyed a menu created by Ferrán Adrià in which our Chivite Colección 125 Rosado 2007 was served.
Fort he first time ever, the winery uncorked bottles of the Chivite Colección 125 Blanco pertaining to the last three decades. The tasting was held in London on September 23rd of de 2013, and it was guided by Julián Chivite and Denis Dubourdieu. The comments from the British press confirm the wine can count itself in the ranks of the best whites due to its elegance and ageing capacity.
The Chivite las Fincas rosé wine was released as a partnership between Julián Chivite and Juan Mari Arzak, age-old friends. This wine, of an extremely pale pink color and presented in a gem-like bottle, was a pioneer in the Spanish market at the time.
On the 3rd of March, 2016, Madrid became the stage for a historical vertical tasting led by Julián Chivite, Denis Dubourdieu and César Muñoz in which 28 vintages from the Chivite Colección 125 range were uncorked. 100 renowned professionals from the winemaking sector, such as Alvaro Palacios or Peter Sisseck, or from the sommelier branch, as well as wine critics, winery owners such as Guillermo de Aranzábal from Bodegas Rioja Alta, Alejandro Aznar from Marqués de Riscal and Enrique Valero de Abadía Retuerta were able to taste these wine jewels. César Muñoz, oenologist and consultant to Chivite, led the tasting.
Cesar Muñoz took over Chivite’s wine management after the demise of Denis Dubourdieu that same year, a natural step considering he had been the French oenologist’s assistant since 2012, following and implementing all of the protocols established by him.
During the state visit of President Xi Jinping of China and his wife to Spain on November 28th, 2018, TM the Kings of Spain offered a gala supper in their honor, choosing our Chivite Finca Legardeta Chardonnay 2017 to accompany one of the key moments of their visit.
Las Fincas 2 Garnachas was launched as the second wine born from the partnership between Julián Chivite and Juan Mari Arzak. In this case it is a white wine made from both white Grenache and red Grenache presented in the gem-like bottle of the brand, but in this case, of black glass.
La Zorrera was released as the family’s first single-vineyard wine made from Grenache.
The tasting panel of the prestigious Guía Peñin bestowed 99/100 points to the Chivite Colección 125 Blanco 2005, a score that only two other white wines have ever obtained in the Guide’s history.
The third wine within the range of Las Fincas, a very limited, numbered edition of a barrel-fermented rosé called Chivite Las Fincas Rosado Fermentado en Barrica 2018 is launched in the market as the latest partnership between Chivite & Arzak.
Survey plans to develop the new facilities and production plant at Finca de Legardeta are undertaken.