When Eben Sadie and Dominik Huber first met in 2001 at Mas Martinet, Eben was a promising and highly-regarded young […]Keep Reading
When Eben Sadie and Dominik Huber first met in 2001 at Mas Martinet, Eben was a promising and highly-regarded young enologist from South Africa and Dominik, German by birth, was a wine enthusiast with a background in business administration and an interest in the culinary arts. Both became enthralled by the region and made plans to return in 2001 to make their own wine.
With the help of the Pérez family of Mas Martinet, Eben and Dominik purchased some fruit and leased a little corner in the cellar of Cims de Porrera, where they vinified their first vintage of Dits del Terra in 2001. After two years at Cims de Porrera, they moved into a tiny cellar in Torroja del Priorat. The move coincided with the first vintage of Arbossar in 2003. In the following years, they released additional cuvées: Torroja in 2005, Manyes and Tosses in 2006, Pedra de Guix in 2008, and Terra de Cuques in 2011. Throughout the decade since its founding, Terroir al Limit has evolved in its understanding of the Priorat – coming to view it as a region similar to Burgundy in its complexity and potential to produce elegant and transparent wines. Terra de Cuques is their village wine, Pedra de Guix, Dits del Terra and Arbossar the Premier Crus, and Manyes and Tosses are the Grand Crus.
With the demands arising from increasing production at Terroir al Limit and additional farming responsibilities with the conversion to organic and biodynamic farming practices in conjunction with Eben Sadie spending more time in South Africa with his various projects, Dominik began working full time at Terroir al Limit in 2007. Devoting himself primarily to the cultivation of a growing number of vineyard sites, Dominik’s approach to overseeing (or micromanaging) the farming had a remarkable impact on the fruit’s quality at harvest. With better fruit coming into the cellar, Eben and Dominik had a profound realization that ripe, concentrated grapes combined with extractive winemaking and aging in barriques didn’t really show the vineyards’ authenticity they were working. As a result, they began re-evaluating their work – resulting in earlier harvests, phasing out the use of 225-liter barrels, and employing a “Burgundian” style of vinification utilizing whole clusters and avoiding either pigeage or rémontage. The goal at Terroir al Limit is to foster wines of infusion rather than extraction and elegance rather than the typical heaviness of the Priorat. This process of evolution is continuing with the gradual change to aging all their wines in concrete instead of oak to ensure the purest expression in each of their cuvées.
Realizing that organic or biodynamic farming during an era of global warming is insufficient for a region as hot and dry as the Priorat, Dominik farms rigorously to guarantee the health and vitality of his soils so they can retain as much moisture as possible, reducing the hydric stress on the vines in summer and allowing for an earlier harvest of physiologically ripe fruit. Eben Sadie left Terroir al Limit in 2011 to devout his energies to his extraordinary work in South Africa, but he left it in the capable hands of Dominik Huber. Each successive vintage is a testament to their original vision for Terroir al Limit, as well as Dominik’s continued quest to make the most elegant and expressive wines in the Priorat.Close