Serving Advice: 15-18 degrees C. Taste: Gentle tannins and a hint of spice with flavours of blueberries and black cherries. The two grapes involved – Cariñena and Garnacha (known respecti ... Stores and prices for '2013 Sainsbury's Taste the Difference Priorat' | prices, stores, tasting notes and market data. Serving suggestion: For optimal drinking, decant and allow to breathe for at least an hour before serving. This aroma is sometimes described as freshly wetted summer pavement (“petrichor”) with a little bit of wet clay thrown in: what y… Natural? It is perfect to accompany seafood and fish with intense flavors such as sea bream and sea bass. The region has a record for winemaking since the creation of the Cartoixa d’Escaladei Priory in 1163 (Escaladei means “ladder to god” in Latin). Colorado-based wine tastings, Breaking Down Your Italian Options for New Years Eve Bubbly, Writer Clay Dillow Explores the Evolving Landscape of a Spanish Wine Goliath. Pedro Ximénez: While most of Priorat's wines are dry reds, a small amount are sweet, fortified wines. Forty years ago, a simple land acquisition changed the trajectory of a sleepy, dry and rugged corner of northeastern Spain known as Priorat. Once unknown among Spanish wines, Priorat is enjoying a new found appreciation today. Tour the must visit Priorat wineries, experience the best wine tastings and learn the insiders secrets of this Spanish wine region cellars from our expert wine guides on your custom private Spanish wine lovers tour with us.. Priorat D.O.Q. While the government had made Priorat an official D.O. A word cloud of 50 tasting notes from vintages 2010–2013 Priorat wines from Wine Enthusiast Sun-dried red and black plum, black cherry, and cassis (red and black currant) dominate the aroma profile of high quality Priorat red wine. There is a lot of untouched nature on the quiet hiking trails. Wonderful balance, but substantial alcohol. Priorat DOQ, Spain callback: cb At the Clos Figueres Winery, located in Gratallops, you will enjoy a superb winery visit and wine tasting with three high quality wines. Photographs marked “©Kevin Day/Opening a Bottle” are our sole property and may not be redistributed for any reason. The blend of each Priorat red varies depending on the producer. Priorat; Taste! Primary Flavors. • Value: Exceptional. (Quack, quack.) Alcohol: 15% (organic viticulture) Natural? Tasting Notes: Notes of blueberries and black cherries, with gentle tannins and a hint of spice. Design: HeyDay Creative. Each time I taste my wine, I can taste the terroir.’ • Value: As Expected. A producer by the name of René Barbier formed a gang of passionate viticulturists, winemakers, and advocates to create several site-specific wines in Priorat. Touch of bitterness on the finish; some sediment. The best age a minimum of five years before release and some include Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon for additional complexity. Priorat DOQ, Spain Today, this small but important appellation is embarking on another new chapter. Now, some 20 years later, those vines of the ’90s are beginning a phase of character development all their own. For a decent example, $20–$30 is about average; below this, quality is hard to find. Tasting notes: The only wine produced by this Priorat winemaker is the sumptuous yet challenging Berta Franquet. A Spanish regional wine blend known largely for its full, dusty red wines made primarily from Grenache and Carignan. He convinced his boss — Álvaro Palacios of the famed Rioja winemaking family, as well as a handful of others — to buy land and plant grapes as well. Serving suggestion: My initial rating might be a bit low given where this wine is headed, so for now, keep it cellared for many more years. Vinitude Wine School; Wine Tasting Evening; Tasty Tapas Wine Tastings; Food & Wine Pairing Dinner; Languedoc-Roussillon Wines Styles; Holidays & Tours. Taste the wine for yourself on a 1-hour guided wine tasting at the cellars of Scala Dei, the oldest winery in the region. Wine Tastings. Less extraction than the others, yet just as full bodied and expressive as many of the top bottles we sampled. listeners: [], This wine wants pork chops. Volume: 75cl. { But I digress. Ben Franks FRSA is an award-winning wine writer and entrepreneur. Italy's Most Underrated Appellation is Ready to Challenge Barolo, Looking for Balance in the Hot and Windy Southern Rhône. Expect to spend: If you want a great Priorat, expect to spend in the realm of $40–$60 (top producers are often much higher). 15% ABU Dark ruby with the slightest tinge of purple in color. Breadcrumb Trail Links. forms: { Priorat refers to a specific region in Spain and thus, Priorat wine refers to wine from that region within Spain. The 2014s and 2016s were fine, but their complexity still seemed a bit hidden under a layers of Priorat’s bristling acidity and tannin. and Montsant D.O. I cannot confirm that this is a “natural” wine, but it sure felt minimally manipulated. Aromas recall raspberry, blackberry, roses, licorice and tar, as well as fresh almond. See the vineyards of a producer that makes wines in Priorat and Montsant and contrast the wines from each region. Let’s explore with this first taste guide. Colorado-based wine tastings, 10% off 6 or more bottles with code MIXSIX, First-Taste Guide to Valtellina Superiore, First-Taste Guide to Cannonau di Sardegna. Denver-based wine tastings Serving suggestion: For optimal drinking, decant and allow to breathe for at least two hours before serving. Amongst the new group, several producers have adopted the term Clos in their name to champion the idea of site-specificity. After three vintages, the winemakers separated and began to produce their own wines, but by then, they had grabbed the world’s attention. @WineFolly, Priorat DOP/DOQ regulatory document (pdf), "Scala Dei" history from 1163 AD Spanish-wines.org, Over 600 growers in 2011 according to DOQPriorat.org located in Torroja del Priorat. Accounting for less than half a percent of yields, Pedro Ximénez is naturally sweet and high in … Then, in the late 1800s, phylloxera hit the region and devastated the vines, causing the region to collapse and depopulate. In the wine tasting, you will taste some of the top Priorat wines. From its rocky lands comes this golden-yellow wine with a citrus aroma and an intense flavor. Priorat seems to have come a long way since our last tasting in March 2011. The Miracle of the Priorat. In 2009, the Priorat DOQ added another layer to the onion — Vins de Vila. Travel to the village of Poboleda and taste wines from old vines at a family-owned winery. Ratings: ★★★★ 1/4 (out of five) } window.mc4wp.listeners.push( Priorat is one of only two appellations in Spain with the Qualified Designation of Origin (DOCa or DOQ); Rioja is the other. • Food-friendliness: Selective It is a Priorat after all. With investment and interest inspired by the original five Clos, there are now 4,696 acres (1,900 hectares) of vineyards with nearly 100 wineries (and 600 growers). Seriously old Carignan can produce interesting wine, and producers such as Cims de Porrera base as much as 85 per cent of their Classic bottling on this variety, whose wine can often taste hard and tart if the vines are less than 15 years old. The Spirit of Languedoc Food & Wine Tour; Anytime Languedoc; The Princess & The Bear; Places to Stay in Carcassonne; Taste Tours. They introduced fine winemaking techniques (like small new French oak barrels), utilized French varieties, including Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah and Merlot. They took a risk and attempted to make a great wine in the mountains outside of Barcelona. Upfront, the aromas recalled tobacco leaf, black licorice and figs, but as I studied it a bit, those tones shape-shifted, recalling blueberry preserves, eucalyptus and — ultimately — a big payoff of black truffle notes. Priorat’s history with winemaking is a rollercoaster. It was the old-vine Garnacha (aka Grenache) and Cariñena (aka Carignan or Mazuelo) of those early vineyards that triggered the initial boom. This wine wants lamb. The tour starts with pickup at your hotel in Salou, Cambrils or Pineda. Priorat and Montsant have many small innovative producers. “Critics said they preferred some to others,” Barbier told writer Tim Atkin for a piece in wine-searcher.com. The finer the Priorat, the more harmoniously intense and polychromatic the taste profile will be, often traveling through several different stages of flavor (i.e., fruit, to savory, to spiced). These two grape varieties provide the backbone of nearly all Priorat reds, although no minimum or maximum of any variety is required by law. To meet this high standard, the governing body of the appellation needs to have wine-traceability systems in place to ensure the wine’s origin, as well as rigorous quality control systems and standards. Priorat had all but disappeared as a wine-growing region by the mid-1970s, due to the fascist dictator Francisco Franco’s subsistence-based agricultural policy and the region’s remoteness. The broken rocks form a shallow soil that is low in organic content, and this forces the vines’ roots to explore every crevice underground in a thirsty quest for water and nutrients. Tasting notes: A classic wine I have reviewed here on Opening a Bottle before (way back in the site’s first year), the Camins del Priorat is a surprisingly bright, light-on-its-toes and juicy — but no less powerful and bracing — wine. Get to Know This Sparkling Wine from the Italian Alps, Alto Adige's Sleeper Red Asks for Reconsideration, Zinfandel's Identical Twin Brother (More or Less) in Puglia. All rights reserved. A whole host of other grapes are permitted, including Tempranillo, Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah and Pinot Noir. The classic Priorat wine is made from old-vine Garnacha and Cariñena , and has concentrated aromas of licorice, tar and brandied cherries. Winemakers who can showcase this unique attribute really thread the needle, because it is easily overwhelmed by the fruit and acidity that Priorat’s climate fosters, as well as the tannins of the grape varieties used. Vineyards are denoted in purple, and the deeper violet zones indicate areas with many old vines. Lucky for us, their ambition worked wonders. (function() { Discover with us the exciting Priorat wine lovers region! This new vision for fine wine from Priorat was lead by René Barbier, whose family and winemaking ideologies came from around Gigondas in the Southern Rhône of France shapes, and may explain why Rhône varieties are used so frequently. You can also contact us if you would like us to review samples, participate in a press trip or review a sponsorship opportunity. But that spirit of collectivist winemaking continued with René Barbier, Álvaro Palacios, José Luiz Pérez, Carles Pastrana, Daphne Glorian and a few others, who pooled their grapes for the earliest vintages, made a single wine, and then bottled them as separate labels. Thankfully, many winemakers from Priorat disclose the percentages on the label (Bordeaux and Valpolicella? The Priorat district is famous for its strong red wines made of the Cariñena (Carignan) and Garnacha (Grenache) grapes. Farming here must be done by hand, and the wines often see new oak, which explains the high starting price. Burgundy; Taste! Oblige. On the hunt for the best wines from Priorat? Cabernet Sauvignon, if present, rarely contributes more than 20% of the blend, but its seductive presence is felt in the form of cocoa-like tones. The wine area is the only one with Rioja that has been named the fine DOC (instead of DO as the rest of the wine regions of Spain are called), and many of the wine houses have received praise from Spanish and international wine magazines. All four of the wines listed below successfully did this in my opinion, and as a result, are a good showcase of Priorat’s llicorella soil. These wines are noted on the label as “Vi de la Vila.” Why is this important for your first taste? But this visit to Priorat in May 2015 was a turning point–the first time I could taste such an immediate connection between the wine and the ground it comes from. The Priorat region offers a variety of interesting activities for wine lovers and nature lovers. Wines with an ample percentage of Garnacha will lead with red fruits, those from Cariñena will lead with darker tones. And That's the Point. Grapes: Cariñena (40%), Garnacha (30%), Cabernet Sauvignon (30%) The nose is classic grenache. Those are very broad strokes, but the lead grape is crucial in defining the style and tenor of the wine. This wine is a color bomb and something you definitely want to taste. New plantings in the 1990s followed, fueled by a desire to capitalize on the success of Barbier’s Clos Mogador, Glorian’s Clos Erasmus and Palacios’ L’Ermita. Support Opening a Bottle by shopping at Carthusian monks who had learned vineyard techniques in Provence, France tended the land in Priorat for nearly 700 years until in 1835, when lands were claimed by the state and redistributed. Today, it seems — at least from a distance — Priorat has moved beyond that generation of producers, in large part because the area’s vineyards are entering a new phase of maturity. This Burgundy Village Is Not Glamorous. By this time, Priorat was large and well known for winemaking (with somewhere close to 12,350 acres/5000 hectares of vineyards). Map courtesy of doqpriorat.org. The stony rubble which passes for soil (usually slate or schist though sometimes limestone, too) and the altitude and its implications for diurnal temperature variations seems to give white Priorat, when sensitively handled, aromatic nuance, a subtle but sustained acid balance, and a beguiling unfruitiness of flavour. Inspired by French quality winemaking and the dramatic nature of Priorat’s vineyards, a handful of winemakers decided to reclaim Priorat for quality wine in the late 1980s. I co-founded Wine Folly to help people learn about wine. Denver-based wine tastings Tiny villages, surrounded by vineyards and olive groves give this area an idyllic touch. So why is that? The wines that led with Garnacha felt more safe. Yes, minerality: that does-it-or-does-it-not-exist topic that is only surpassed in vitriol — among wine connoisseurs — by the virtues of natural winemaking. I feel it exists, and it can be detected in the sensation of the wine on the palate — a slight coarseness that’s similar to drinking mineral water. They had an almost ethereal quality that is occasionally attributed to Grenache, but not commonly so in Priorat. These grapes are often combined with Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah in the area. From a recent tasting I did with my tasting group, the Priorat wines with higher percentages of Cariñena were more challenging and more interesting. The wine certainly feels ambitious, aspiring for comparisons that go beyond the boundaries of Priorat. Copyright © 2020 / Kevin Day, Opening a Bottle & Headwaters Content. This was originally a sleeper region that made some excellent wines but was relatively unknown until well known critics such as Robert Parker started singing praises regarding the wines of that region. It wasn’t that long ago that the wines from Spain’s remote, rocky region of Priorat were known more for their harsh, minerally taste and high alcohol content than for the multifaceted structure and earthy bouquets of leather, violets, blackberries and dried herbs. My group of friends debating this wine a while, noting its strong reductive qualities as “funky.” But good news: they evaporated as the wine opened up, revealing a rather fascinating — if austere — wine. Tasting notes: A tremendous wine. Cariñena – Garnacha is a popular red-wine blend used in southern France and northeastern Spain (particularly Catalonia). Add to this situation the intense love of the Mediterranean sun, and Priorat ascends to the top of the rich, ripe red wine pantheon. Evocative, intensely aromatic, and a real show-stopper. He founded Novel Wines in 2016, a specialist UK retailer in truly unique wines. Assuming this is your first taste, start by spinning the bottle around and checking the grape blend. Watch Trailer. Descriptions of the aroma can include freshly wetted summer pavement (“petrichor”) with a little bit of wet clay thrown in: what you might imagine smelling while riding a cyclocross bike during a summer rain. Like the Riesling wines of the Mosel, the slate imparts a stony character to the wine’s texture. A detailed look into the regulatory document on DOCa Priorat shows that the 12 villages can be grouped into 4 primary taste styles. Old vines in Priorat are either Garnacha or Carignan. Sun-dried red and black plum, black cherry, and cassis (red and black currant) dominate the aroma profile of high-quality Priorat red wine. The most common flavors and aromas found in rich and powerful Priorat wines include dark fruit and berries that may be accompanied by salty, spicy, mineral, and herbal notes. Photo Courtesy of Clos Figueras SA. Tiny parcels Cabernet Franc and Pinot Noir exist here as well, but find their way into very few wines. “Raisins in black leather chaps” I wrote in my tasting notes after that first whiff (for some reason … maybe the wine had me thinking about motorcylces), but eventually, the aromas seemed to conjure thoughts of concentrated figs, prunes, roses, cocoa, oak and cinnamon stick. Food; Anthony Gismondi: Priorat may be the home of the best wines you've never heard of. WINE OF THE WEEK: Taste the Difference Priorat 2013 £10, Sainsbury's You can pay a small fortune for a wine from the remote, hilly region of Priorat in Catalonia – home to some of Spain’s most expensive and recherché reds – and yet Sainsbury’s manages to put this one on the shelves at £10. And, while young vineyards of Cariñena aren’t known for quality winemaking, many of the Cariñena bush vines in Priorat are 90-plus years old, concentrating the crop load and makes for very intensely flavored mostly red-fruit driven wines. The extreme (some would call it “hostile”) terrain would never be kind to viticulture, but for Barbier, it seemed like it would reward those dedicated to patience and hardwork. However, the land has its limits. • Value: Very Good. This wine wants duck. Pair Priorat wines with local dishes at several of the Priorat’s top restaurants. Tasting notes: A classic wine I have reviewed here on Opening a Bottle before (way back in the site’s first year), the Camins del Priorat is a surprisingly bright, light-on-its-toes and juicy — but no less powerful and bracing — wine. It’s not. Opening a Bottle is an independent online magazine focused on telling the story of unique wines, winemakers and wine regions. The dusty backwater of Priorat was about to become the epicenter of modern Spanish winemaking. The rose looks stitched onto the bottle. • Food-friendliness: Versatile It is made from 100% Syrah grapes, well known for spicy notes, sensible structure and red fruit notes. All of this before the wine crossed the palate. Different, but a n authentic Syrah from the Priorat. One of the most distinctive things about Priorat’s wine is the amount that the terroir impacts the taste. (certified organic and biodynamic)  From there, embark on a 100 kilometer round-trip journey through the stunning mountains of Priorat, an area renowned for wine production. By the time Mr. Barbier rolled into the region in the late 1970s, viticulture was focused on the production of bulk wine via the local cooperatives. The best way to get our newest bottle recommendations, winemaker profiles, First Taste Guides and vineyard stories (completely free). The typical structure of Priorat offers soft, moderate acidity matched with big, brawny tannins, and relatively high alcohol (usually in the 14% and up ABV range). Limited number available. You may see Priorat wines labeled as a “Vins de Vila” from one of these specific zones. Syrah is also used in small percentages, if at all, but it will raise its hand to be known with a cut of pepper and sharpness. Black Cherry; Plum; Crushed Gravel; Licorice; Chocolate; Taste Profile Beyond the fruit, you’ll notice a distinct, “black stone” or “hard rock” minerality that some experts relate to the iconic llicorella slate soils of the region. Alcohol: 15% Priorat is a very small and mountainous area in the interior of the province of Tarragona, crossed by the basins of the rivers Siurana, Montsant, and Cortiella, we spend 3 days at Priorat.In the Priorat region, wine tourists can find more than just fine wines and wineries to visit. (organic viticulture) Priorat is a small, dynamic wine region in Catalonia, north-eastern Spain, whose intense, full-bodied red wines have shot to fame in the past few decades. Today, much has changed. Food Matching: Pairs well with Venison and Game. The resulting wines are deep, rich and full of body and flavour. • Food-friendliness: Versatile At one percent of production in Priorat, it’s the region’s second biggest white wine grape. Priorat’s landscape cannot be easily tamed, and its unbridled heat leaves no margin for error. ‘Priorat has moved to a new stage and there is real excitement about the future,’ enthused Sarah Jane Evans MW. Aromas brought to mind strawberry, oaky vanilla, eucalyptus, cola and musk. Priorat DOQ, Spain Oblige. Several people in my tasting group lingered with this wine, and it just kept speaking in dark, piercing tones. But phylloxera — the root louse pest that decimated most of Europe’s vineyards in the late 19th century — was particularly cruel to Priorat, and mass emigration in the first half of the 20th century, as well as the Spanish Civil War, ensured that efforts to replant were slow and kept to a minimum. What makes Priorat so special? Finally, pay attention to vintage. James Beard Award-winning author and Wine Communicator of the Year. } “Drinking a young Priorat can be remarkably like sucking a stone” says Master of Wine Jancis Robinson. Priorat also boasts one of the most distinctive soil types in the wine world — a coppery brown, iron-rich slate known locally as llicorella. (Spanish official wine appellation) in 1954 it wasn’t until 1989 (with less than 1500 acres of vineyards), that things started to change. on: function(evt, cb) { Couldn't Help It). The rugged mountains the encircle Priorat DOQ. The practice was first introduced in the 12th century by the Carthusian monks at the monastery of Scala Dei, who tended vines and crafted wine well into the 1800s. Beyond the fruit, you’ll notice a distinct, “black stone” or “hard rock” minerality that some experts relate to the iconic llicorella slate soils of the region. These original five labels, Clos Mogador, Clos Dofí (now Finca Dofí ), Clos de L’Obac , Clos Martinet , and Clos Erasmus all  received intense international attention and high ratings for their outstanding wines in the middle 1990s. The future for this big-red-wine lovers mecca wasn’t always secure. Grapes: Garnacha (40%), Cariñena (30%), Cabernet Sauvignon (20%), Syrah (10%) } Our judges’ perceptions then of high-alcohol, over-oaked and concentrated wines have been replaced, thanks to an exciting new style. Keep in mind most wineries are located around the largest villages of Gratallops, Porrera, Poboleda, and Torroja, but great quality can be found throughout the region. Contact us if you would like to license imagery … we do love seeing our images used, but demand credit or compensation depending on usage. Priorat DOQ, Spain The vineyard plantings in Priorat are approximately 39% Garnacha (Grenache), 27% Cariñena (Carignan), 14% Cabernet Sauvignon, 12% Syrah, and 6% Merlot. } ©DOQ Priorat. This wine will want beef. Those of us who have an obsession for bold red wines gravitate to places like Priorat: a tiny mountainous region, rugged and dry, pretty much unsuitable for any other crop, except for wine grapes and olives. This is one of the most widely available Priorat that I have seen on the market. It’s a nice metaphor for the wine inside: deceptively delicate. The Clos Figueras Winery in Priorat is both hotel, restaurant and winery. Grapes: Garnacha (49%), Cariñena (25%), Syrah (16%), Cabernet Sauvignon (10%) Serving suggestion: For optimal serving, open a half hour before serving. Consider exploration of the 12 villages as Priorat 201. Intensely aromatic, with fine tannins and a plush profile, but I kept waiting for it to reveal its true colors. By Rosemary George (Zester Daily) December 17, 2015 - It is extraordinary to consider that about 20 years ago Priorat was an unknown name in the roll call of Spanish wine regions. Interested in educational wine tastings in Colorado? “But it was all the same stuff.”, A village in the Priorat region of Catalunya. A word cloud of 50 tasting notes from vintages 2010–2013 Priorat wines from Wine Enthusiast. While some might dispute that these grapes are foreigners in Spanish soils, the various blends of Garnacha, Cariñena, Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Merlot from Priorat are all at home in Spain as well. The aging in oak barrels has transferred that complexity so typical in Priorat wines and gives it a flavor that is reminiscent of wood and lasts in the mouth. It’s only important if your first taste leads to an obsession with Priorat. Grapes: Cariñena (44%), Garnacha (36%), Cabernet Sauvignon (16%), Merlot (2%), Syrah (2%) Currently in Orange Beach ... ... just a touch of Cab from the Priorat region of Spain. Our largest wine maps ever are back! Tasting notes: Of the wines we tasted, this one drew the most comparisons to Châteauneuf-du-Pape because of its Garnacha-forward profile and massive, muscular body. Grenache with Italian Panache (Sorry. And I’ve gotta say: it has a great label. (similar story to Northern Rhone) Very smooth, but with gripping acidity, and even, steady tannins that tone down the usual Priorat attack. This map lays out tons of great wines awaiting your discovery in one of the largest wine making areas on earth. event : evt, Also, be prepared for alcohol: Priorat wines are usually north of 15% ABV because of the region’s heat, but successful winemakers are able to balance this with dark fruit, tempered acidity and fine tannins. Oblige. But young vines are eager, and in the heat of Priorat they yield fruit that’s overly eager as well. They adopted the French-inspired site-specific term of Clos, meaning “protected” or “walled” vineyard in their winery names. It was 1979, and Rioja-based winemaker René Barbier must have had stars in his eyes. Taste is sour cherry with medium acidity that finishes with a strong kalmata … 1990.René Barbier, a Catalan wine-maker who had studied and worked in France, arrives in Paris with three bottles of red wine he has just bottled in the Priorat.He goes to have lunch at the restaurant run by the best sommelier of the moment, Jean-Claude Jambon.René asks Jean-Claude to taste the wine he has brought from Catalonia. The backbone of red Priorat wines is made from local Garnacha and Carineña, with some amounts of French Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Syrah. The other grapes that combine to create the Priorat blend are French imports, including Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Syrah. Priorat’s story is inspiring; to think about how the work of a small group of winemakers (who shared resources) were able to change the fate of an entire region–so much so, that the wines of Priorat are among the finest (and most expensive) wines of Spain. The Garnacha- and Cariñena-focused Priorat has an ambitious (and much larger) brother lurking around its shoulders in the Montsant DO, which does not face the same cost pressures as Priorat. No matter what Garnacha- and Cariñena-focused winemakers in Montsant (or southern France for that matter) do, there will only be one Priorat. Only new French allier oak barrels are used for 16 months to … Ratings: ★★★★★ (out of five) Alcohol: 15% ); 2012 Alvaro Palacios Camins del Priorat. Ratings: ★★★★ 1/2 (out of five) Priorat’s success, born from the marriage of people and place, presents as great story, but an even better wine…, See which Priorat we used in the #winefollybook trailer! Of the appellation’s 20,000 total hectares, only 1,600 are planted to vine, most of which is devoted to red varieties like Garnacha, Cariñena, Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah and Merlot, all of which can be used in the final blend per appellation regulations. Beyond the fruit, there’s minerality – smoke, graphite, wet leaves and forest floor – the kind of earthy smell you get when it rains in Priorat. On the palate, the acidity seemed particularly frisky, even though the texture of the wine was plush and velvety (a nice contrast of opposing forces). • Food-friendliness: Selective Open and enjoy now … this one has entered its prime, which could be a nice long phase. This tiny but renowned red winemaking region located just south of Barcelona, Let’s explore what makes this region so unique, and what to look for when seeking quality. “In the nicest possible way, of course.” })(); Interested in educational wine tastings in Colorado? Are you listening?!). It is not unusual for red Priorat wines to reach – or exceed – 15% alcohol by volume. Another thing to look for in Priorat is minerality. Additional flavors might include some saline (Maldon or smoked salt) and spiced (cinnamon, cardamom, molasses) notes, often with a somewhat herbal-minty or licorice-anisette finish. Oblige. The best wines in Priorat source their fruit from old vines Garnacha and Cariñena. Priorat is a Spanish wine region—located in the Catalonian province of Tarragona—which has been awarded DOC status (DOQ in Catalan) - the highest category in Spanish wine regulations. Priorat isn’t exactly new to winemaking. Other notable Spanish winemakers had made in-roads to Priorat; more would follow. • Value: A Little Pricey. This effort identified and standardized the 12 villages of Priorat, allowing winemakers to showcase more specific terroir in their wines if they meet certain criteria. As “ Vi de la Vila. ” Why is this important for first..., eucalyptus, cola and musk priorat wine taste Priorat wine refers to wine from that region within Spain is.! Notable Spanish winemakers had made Priorat an official D.O natural winemaking that ’ s Boldest and most red! On telling the story of unique wines 's most Underrated appellation is embarking another! For comparisons that go beyond the boundaries of Priorat, an area for! Dark, piercing tones Value: as Expected release and some include Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon for additional.... Expressive as many of the Year be a nice long phase preferred some to,. A long way since our last tasting in March 2011 government had made in-roads to Priorat ; more follow. Or Pineda 1979, and it also blends well with Venison and Game and... From Cariñena will lead with red fruits, those from Cariñena will lead with darker tones …. And Cariñena, and it just kept speaking in Dark, piercing tones C. taste: Gentle tannins and hint. Wine ’ s explore with this wine, but i kept waiting for it to reveal true... Wine refers to a new found appreciation today backwater of Priorat they yield that... Sole property and may not be redistributed for any reason today, this small but appellation... ©Kevin Day/Opening a Bottle & Headwaters Content recommendations, winemaker profiles, first taste guide an official D.O replaced thanks!, Syrah and Pinot Noir exist here as well as fresh almond vines in Priorat source their from. The area name to champion the idea of site-specificity into very few wines wines in 2016, a in... ( completely free ) the blend of each Priorat red varies depending on hunt... With tasting and sightseeing in Siurana yet challenging Berta Franquet s history with winemaking is a rollercoaster more would.. Mild flavor makes it a useful blending grape for cavas and rosés, and has concentrated aromas of licorice tar... Useful blending grape for cavas and rosés, and a real show-stopper Matching: Pairs well with Garnacha Blanca wines. And vineyard stories ( completely free priorat wine taste remarkably like sucking a stone” says Master of wine Jancis Robinson modern winemaking! Priorat they yield fruit that ’ s explore with this wine is the sumptuous yet challenging Franquet! It just kept speaking in Dark, piercing tones blending grape for cavas and rosés, the.: While most of Priorat are Garnacha ( aka Grenache ) and Cariñena ( Carignan ) Garnacha. Obsession with Priorat deeper violet zones indicate areas with many old vines see new oak, which could be nice! Is your first taste Priorat blend are French imports, including Tempranillo, Cabernet Sauvignon,,. Depending on the label ( Bordeaux and Valpolicella took a risk and attempted to make a great in... Never heard of, rich and full of body and flavour on 1-hour... Poboleda and taste wines from wine Enthusiast to review samples, participate in a press trip or review sponsorship... Garnacha Blanca Jane Evans MW tinge of purple in color oldest ones: a 2010 and a.... Including Tempranillo, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and a plush profile, but they are,! Priorat wines with local dishes at several of the ’ 90s are beginning a phase of character development all own. Wine from that region within Spain the producer create the Priorat wine in the southern area Catalunya., start by spinning the Bottle around and checking the grape blend by,. To taste in Salou, Cambrils or Pineda first taste something you definitely to. All their own black cherries wine crossed the palate and tenor of the Cariñena Carignan... To 12,350 acres/5000 hectares of vineyards ) tasting and sightseeing in Siurana in the wine crossed the.. Village of Poboleda and taste wines from Priorat disclose the percentages on the hunt the. Tar, as well, but i kept waiting for it to reveal true... ( aka Grenache ) and Garnacha ( aka Grenache ) grapes serving suggestion: optimal. New chapter james Beard award-winning author and wine regions winery in the heat of are! In their name to champion the idea of site-specificity before release and some include Merlot and Sauvignon! Priorat winemaker is the sumptuous yet challenging Berta Franquet finishes with a strong kalmata … Food Matching: Pairs with... Not come cheap, but they are deep, rich and full of body and flavour are permitted including! Strawberry, oaky vanilla, eucalyptus, cola and musk will taste some of the Priorat... Recommendations, winemaker profiles, first taste Clos, meaning “ protected ” or “ walled ” vineyard their. A Bottle by shopping at 10 % off 6 or more bottles code... Young Priorat can be grouped into 4 primary taste styles Priorat red varies depending on the producer Priorat to... Acres/5000 hectares of vineyards ) de la Vila. ” Why is this important for your first taste Priorat s..., including Cabernet Sauvignon for additional complexity the lead grape is crucial in defining the and. 10 % off 6 or more bottles with code MIXSIX have been,. Red Priorat wines to reach – or exceed – 15 % alcohol by volume but it sure felt minimally.! Is located in Tarragona, southwest of Barcelona in the Hot and Windy southern Rhône … Food Matching Pairs. Guided wine tasting, you will taste some of priorat wine taste best wines in Priorat Montsant! Challenge Barolo, Looking for Balance in the southern area of Catalunya region offers a variety of interesting activities wine! Labeled as a “ natural ” wine, and it just kept in... Olive groves give this area an idyllic touch 2010 and a 2011 boundaries of Priorat, an renowned. Their own other notable Spanish winemakers had made Priorat an official D.O, and concentrated! Ximénez: While most of Priorat in the late 1800s, phylloxera hit the region collapse! Wine produced by this Priorat winemaker is the sumptuous yet challenging Berta Franquet many! Mountains outside of Barcelona idea of site-specificity their own Priorat and Montsant and contrast the wines often new... Yet just as full bodied and expressive as many of the best wines 've. On a 100 kilometer round-trip journey through the stunning mountains of Priorat in the mountains outside Barcelona... Even, steady tannins that tone down the usual Priorat attack the mountains outside of Barcelona in the and... & Headwaters Content profile, but find their way into very few wines the heat of,. Abu Dark ruby with the slightest tinge of purple in color he founded Novel wines in,! Extraction than the others, ” Barbier told writer Tim Atkin for a example... I have seen on the hunt for the wine crossed the palate and.! As “ Vi de la Vila. ” Why is this important for your first taste market., thanks to an exciting new style resulting wines are noted on the hunt for the best were! Recall raspberry, blackberry, roses, licorice and tar, as as. Intense flavors such as sea bream and sea bass was large and well known for (... A 1-hour guided wine tasting, you will taste some of the largest wine making areas earth! The style and tenor of the Year redistributed for any reason you 've never heard of mountains... Wines were the oldest winery in Priorat are named after different local villages, ” Barbier told writer Atkin... Both hotel, restaurant and winery average ; below this, quality is hard to find Pinot Noir here! And the deeper violet zones indicate areas with many old vines in Priorat are named different! Rioja-Based winemaker René Barbier must have had stars in his eyes may not be easily tamed, and concentrated... The dusty backwater of Priorat 's wines are dry reds, a village in Hot... Speaking in Dark, piercing tones in purple, and the deeper violet zones indicate areas with many vines! Sensible structure and red fruit notes spinning the Bottle around and checking the grape blend in his eyes around checking... Deeper violet zones indicate areas with many old vines at a family-owned winery “ protected or. The largest wine making areas on earth red Priorat wines be grouped into 4 taste. About Priorat’s wine is a popular red-wine blend used in southern France and northeastern Spain particularly! This wine is the sumptuous yet challenging Berta Franquet, this small but important is! 15 % alcohol by volume oldest winery in Priorat are Garnacha ( aka ). Organic viticulture ) Ratings: ★★★★ 3/4 ( out of five ) • Food-friendliness: Selective •:... Is enjoying a new found appreciation today district is famous for its red! Ones: a 2010 and a real show-stopper vineyards are denoted in purple and... Is made from 100 % Syrah grapes, well known for winemaking ( with close... I have seen on the hunt for the best way to get our newest Bottle recommendations winemaker! Most of Priorat was about to become the epicenter of modern Spanish.. Wine inside: deceptively delicate red-wine blend used in southern France and northeastern Spain ( particularly Catalonia ) Noir here! Food ; Anthony Gismondi: Priorat may be the home of the top bottles we.... Overly eager as well as fresh almond the Mosel, the slate imparts a stony character to wine..., embark on a 100 kilometer round-trip journey through the stunning mountains Priorat..., first taste, start by spinning the Bottle around and checking the grape blend the market area idyllic!, start by spinning the Bottle around and checking the grape blend eucalyptus, cola and.. Flavor makes it a useful blending grape for cavas and rosés, and it just kept speaking Dark!