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Mas Alta

In the Priorat you can find local families who have tended their vines for generations as well as newcomers drawn […]

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Mas Alta

In the Priorat you can find local families who have tended their vines for generations as well as newcomers drawn to the possibilities of this terroir – even the founding members of the modern Priorat include representatives of both camps. The creators of Mas Alta, Michel and Christine Vanhoutte, originally from Belgium, became enamored with the early wines they tasted from the Priorat and decided to relocate to the small village of La Vilella Alta with the goal of establishing an estate of their own. In the process they enlisted the help of Michel Tardieu and Philippe Cambie to start up their Bodega.

Mas Alta is currently 35 ha in size with additional acreage contracted from local growers. At the core of the estate, as with most properties in the Priorat, are old-vine Garnacha and Carinyena that are up to 100 years old in age. They have also planted some new vineyards of Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon, Garnatxa Negra and Carinyena as well as an increasing amount of indigenous white varieties, Garnatxa Blanca, Pedro Ximénez and Macabeu. Over the last decade there has been a transition to organic farming and the introduction of many biodynamic practices. As they have adapted to the terroir in the region they have also begun to implement some changes to the winemaking at the property. Since its inception, Mas Alta has championed a lavish and expressive style of wine, but there has been a slow evolution in the cellar. More whole clusters are used in the fermentations, indigenous yeasts are employed and a preference for aging in concrete, foudre and well-seasoned, and larger barrels is prized over new wood and small barriques. 

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“When is the last time anyone found a Priorat rated over 90 points for under $25 a bottle? A project of acclaimed Rhône Valley winemakers Phillippe Cambie and Michel Tardieu from one of Priorat’s nine villages, La Vilella Alta.”

– Robert Parker
Catalonia, Spain
  • Location
    Catalonia, Spain
  • Primary Appellation
    Priorat
  • Proprietor
    Michel & Christine Vanhoutte
  • Winemaker
    Michel Tardieu & Philippe Cambie
  • Size / Elevation
    35 hectares / 100-600 meters
  • Age of Vines
    10-100 years
  • Farming
    Certified organic (CCPAE)
  • Varieties
    Garnatxa Negra, Carinyena, Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Garnatxa Blanca, Pedro Ximénez, Macabeu
  • Cellar
    Hand harvested, natural yeast fermentation in tank, concrete and French oak vats, aging in tank, concrete, foudres and French oak barrels
  • Portfolio
    Eric Solomon Selections
  • Visit Website

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