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June 30, 2015

Priorat, Catalunya and Cava – recent press from the Wine Advocate

Once again Luis Gutiérrez, has done an incomparable job writing about Spanish Wine in the latest issue of the Wine Advocate #219, June 30th 2015. We’ve followed him when he was a collaborator at El Mundo Vino, and then later when he wrote for Jancis Robinson and we really enjoyed his insightful commentary in “The Finest Wines of Rioja and Northwestern Spain,” an indispensable book he co-authored with Jesús Barquín and Victór de la Serna. If you’re not familiar with his work, then you’re missing out on some of the best writing on Spanish wines currently available. In the current issue, Luis tackles Catalunya, including special features on Priorat and Cava, which is of particular interest to European Cellars since we consider ourselves to be specialists in the region (they’re quite literally part of our family!) and many of our producers received well-earned praise.

Tosses in Spring

Les Tosses in Spring – one of the “Grand Cru” vineyards of Terroir al Limit

In the Priorat, with a difficult 2011 largely behind them the growers are looking forward to two vastly different but compelling vintages: a warmer 2012 and the cool 2013, Luis Gutiérrez rightly praises both, but more importantly delves into the changes taking place in the region where power, now more than ever, is being melded with elegance and finesse. Signed out in our portfolio as among the best in the region are: Clos i Terrasses, Mas Alta, Mas Doix and Terroir al Limit with special recognition for Ester Nin as a promising producer worth watching. He also had a chance to taste two of our Black Slate wines from Jordi Vidal at Conreria d’Scala Dei, highlighting them for their refreshing style and tremendous value.

Herencia Altes

Herecia Altes – a property worth watching

In Catalunya, with it’s diverse terroirs, aspects and elevations and ranging from the Mediterranean-influenced coastal region to the foothills of the Pyranees, he drew particular attention to Herencia Altes remarking:

In Terra Alta, Herencia Altés caught my attention with their subtle and balanced wines, this winery founded in 2010 is now on the list of names to follow.

He also draws the spotlight on the pioneering work of Can Rafols del Caus, pushing the envelope since 1979, the exciting new project by Raül Bobet in Costers del Segre, Castell d’Encus, and a producer of “some of the best Cavas around,” Gramona – an early proponent of biodynamic farming and sustainability.

Castell d'Encus

Castell d’Encus – true mountain viticulture