D.O. Terra Alta

Wines from the Terra Alta boast a unique character. This is down to numerous factors, including the regions unique wine culture, the location of the vineyards in the inland Mediterranean, and the abundance of native varieties including White Grenache, whose white wines perhaps best express the unique character of the terroir. It is for this reason that these wines hold their own distinctive classification of “Terra Alta Garnacha Blanca”

Viticulture in Terra Alta dates back to ancient times. During the middle ages, the Knights Templar also planted vines. There are also extant legal documents on the regulation of the grape and wine industry: Las Costums d’Orta dating from 1296 and Las Costums de Miravet from 1319. Despite the current importance of red wines in the region, the most obvious evidence of the culture is related to white wine. It is also highlighted in historical documents from 1647 which record a Venatxa plantation, by Mossén Onofre Catalán in the municipality of Gandesa.


During the first half of the nineteenth century, the celebrated writer Joan Perucho, and even
Pablo Picasso, spent long summers in the area, and knew that the white wines of the Terra Alta were distinguished between virgin and brisados, the latter obtained by fermentation of the white grapes, whole and crushed. It’s also quite remarkable the strong linkage of each municipality to wine production in origin. Infact, throughout history had become popular wines known as "de Gandesa" or "de Batea", especially white, but also red, which were consumed and sold in bulk in many bars in Barcelona. The professionalization of the wine sector as well as the progressive incorporation of modern oenology in some wineries and the desire to develop more modern and quality wines, led to the launch of the DO Terra Alta in 1985. 


The DO Terra Alta is situated in the north east of Spain, to the south of Catalonia, between the River Ebro and the borders of Aragon and spans the 12 municipalities of Polillas, Batea, Bot, Caseres, Corbera de Ebro, La Fatarella, Gandesa, Horta, El Pinell de Brai, La Pobla de Massaluca, Prat de Comte and Vilalba dels Arcs. Currently the DO is home to 5,500 hectares of vineyards, with 1,600 winemakers and 45 wineries. Here the pre-coastal limestone mountain ranges of Pàndols, Cavalls and Puertos preside over a spectacular Mediterranean landscape, highlighting the clearly defined three agricultural landscaped: the flatlands, highlands and the valleys, with the viticulture developed on terraces, often natural, on various terraces. There are vineyards in every type of landscape, the plain, plateau and valley and are especially concentrated in the third central area of production between 350 and 550 metres. The terrace is the farmland component that is most common and it is as a consequence of the interaction of the farmland and the varied orography that can be seen in the terrain arranging them on different orientations and slopes, often among dry stone walls, riverbanks or covered with vegetation both serving to avoid the loss of farm soil through erosion. The most traditional location for these terraces are on the plains and slopes, the differences for inferior slopes or superior ones is 10%, respectively. The rest of the vineyards can be found on terraces made in the slopes and in the valleys, the latter of which naturally benefit from more rainwater due to their location.


 


Climate, Soils and Varieties.


The region is home to a dry Mediterranean climate, highlighting a strong continental influence which is usually only felt out the vegetative period of the vines. Rainfall is moderate, ranging between 350 and 500 metres depending on proximity to the Los Puertos. Worth noting is the unique balance between two prodominating winds, el Cierzo (NW) and la Garbinada (seawinds from the south), which favour optimal conditions for the perfect development of the vineyards and the production of grapes with great concentration and quality. The cultivated soil is generally of medium texture. Its common denominator is its limestone richness, good drainage and its lack of organic material, with varying depths.


The predominance of traditional grape varieties is another important characteristic of viticulture in the DO Terra Alta, although Grenache is the most prominent variety. The White, Black and Hairy Grenache are the prominent varieties, which along with the Macabeu, Parellada and Samsó account for over 75% of the vineyards in the region. It should be noted that agronomically, the Grenache and Samsó varieties are perfectly suited to the traditionally cultured sites, and the classification of these as recommended by the Regulatory Council of the DO Terra Alta evidence promoting these plantations. An interesting fact is that 80% of the world’s White Grenache is grown in the Terra Alta. The rest of the vineyards are occupied by international varieties such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Syrah, Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc, among others. There is also the remarkable existence of the older plantations of the red grape variety known locally as the Morenillo, which is in the process of being officially recognised and classified, although some wineries have already started using it.


 


Wines and wineries from the DO Terra Alta.


Numerous styles of wines are produced in the DO Terra Alta, including white wines, rosés, reds and sparkling wines, as well as 4 different types of “vinos de licor” (mistela blanca, mistela negra, rancid and naturally sweet wines). Despite this diversity, the importance of the Garnacha Blanca and the specific culture surrounding this variety can be understood with the specific classification guarantee of “Terra Alta Garnacha Blanca”.


The cooperatives of Gandesa, Bot, Corbera, Batea, San Salvador de Horta, La Pobla de Massaluca, etc, are the backbone of the Terra Alta, and it is where the majority of the grapes are produced, but with more dignity than the other regions of Catalonia. We should note that Grandesa, after a strong period on the Catalan market, this moment in time seems a bit risky for the winery. Bot, however, working with the idea of focusing on the quality of the wines, seems to have laid the foundations for future projects. Then there is Corbera, which is evolving very positively, beginning to put aside the spirit of making just a good wine to become something else. The path of Batea is then based on a large selection of grape hosts, with ranges of good quality wines.


Edetària. To speak of Edetària is to speak of the Llebería family. The winery produces their wine using only their own vines, since the vineyard is the most important part of their project. The winery is currently home to 38 hectares, 24 of which are vineyards. Edetària is home to a combination of traditional and native varieties to the region from vines that are almost 60 years old, as well as foreign varieties which were planted around 25 years ago, such as Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, the first of their variety in the DO and some of the first in Catalonia. The range of wines produced by the winery includes Vía Edetana Blanc, made with Garnacha Blanca (70%). Taken from vines over 40 years old planted in calcareous clay soils, known as “panel” in the region, and clay, known as “tapàs”, and 30% Viognier. Half of the wine is aged for 4 months in (300litre) French oak barrels. Then there is Edetària Selecció Blanc, made exclusively with the Garnacha Blanca grape from old vines on low yield and fossil dune soils. This wine is aged for 8 months in (300litre) new French oak barrels. The wine offers mineral and floral aromas, is potent in the mouth, balanced with a good and well integrated acidity, which gives it a long life. The winery also produces La Terrenal, another wine made exclusively with the Garnacha Blanca variety, taken from old vines, planted on slopes on clay soils. It is in this type of soil it is when the White Grenache is manifested in fullness, character and power. The winery also produces red wines, such as La Pedrissa, made exclusively with the Cariñena variety, taken from a single estate located on a quarry, aged for 12 months in 300litre barrels. Another red wine made the winery is La Personal, a single variety Hairy Grenache wine, grown on old vines on a single estate. It is a wine that conveys the uniqueness of a variety of which only 50 hectares are worldwide, of which Edetària has 7 hectares. This wine is aged for 12 months in (300litre) French oak barrels. Finally there is La Genuïna, made exclusively with the Grenache variety from a selection of the finest vineyards planted on the “tapas” soils, a composite of different layers of marl formerly accumulated under the sea. This wine is notable for its complexity and expresses the Mediterranean character.


Celler Vinos Piñol. Although the winery was founded back in 1945 in Bateu, the Piñol family have had a worked passionately in viticulture for four generations. The winery took 50 years to market its first bottle, L’Avi Arrufi 1995, but then again, the exceptional is not improvised. The wine was a rousing success, picking up a silver medal at its first international competition at the prestigious Sélections Mondiales de Montréal (Canada), between 1,700 different wines from around the world. Among their wines, the winery sells under the labels: L’Avi Arrufi, Raig de Raïm, the sweet wine Josefine Piñol, and their signature star wine, el Mather Teresina, a wine often mentioned and appearing in prestigious specialised guides. Their latest and perhaps most striking new feature is the red wine Finca Morenillo, made exclusively with the Morenillo variety, from century old wines native to the region, it is aged for 15 months in (500litre) new French oak barrels. This is a wine with elegant aromas, floral, balsamic and liquorice notes, combined with the notes of the oak (roasted, vanilla, cocoa,...); in the mouth the wine maintains these balsamic, spicy, fine and elegant notes.


Celler Bàrbara Forés. The origins of this winery date back to the 1889. The winery cultivates around 22 hectares of vineyards, situated in La Cometa and El Grau, some with Garnacha Blanca with vines over 40 years old. One of their most notable wines is the Bàbara Forés Blanco, a young white wine, made with a Garnacha Blanca and Viognier, it is a fresh, aromatic and tasty which has helped it reach its level of popularity. Their other, more opulent, white wine is El Quintà, made 100% with Garnacha Blanca from the oldest vineyards of the property, barrel fermented. It is a wine that is both very elegant and statuesque, with a remarkable strength and personality. In regards to red wines, the winery produces Coma d’en Pou, a blend of Grenache, Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah and Merlot. The winery also produces a very personal rosé, a blend of Grenache, Syrah and Cariñena, as well as a sweet white wine of Garnacha Blanca, a typical wine of this region. Their latest innovation is the Bàrbara Forés El Templari, a blend of Morenillo (70%) and Garnacha Negra (30%), aged for 12 months in French oak barrels. 


Vins del Tros. This is a relatively young winery launched in 2009 by Joan Ramon Bada, an oenologist, and Josep Arrugat, a vintner, both born in Vilalba dels Arcs, two friends since childhood who share a passion for winemaking and viticulture from their land. In late 2012 the team was joined by another passionate Spanish vintner, Xavier Orobitg, who seeked to bring his extensive experience to the future of the exciting project. The winery is home to 5 different plots of vineyards where they produce the white wine Te La Dedico, a blend of Garnatxa Blanca and Chenin Blanc; Cent x Cent, a single variety Garnatxa Blanca that was awrded as the best white wine without wood in Catalonia by the Guia de Vins de Catalunya 2014, as well as being awarded a silver medal at the International Competition of the World Best Grenaches 2014. Their range of red wines include Ay De Mi, Ay, a blend of Garnatxa Negra and Syrah, aged for 12 months in French oak barrels. Then there is the El Señora Carmen, made exclusively with the Garnacha Negra variety, taken from the Valleta estate on 35 year old vines, and aged for 12 months. One of their most acclaimed wines is Lo Morenillo, made exclusively with the Morenillo variety from the Lo Mas estate, grown on vines over 90 years old, aged for 8 months in French oak barrels and clay pots.


La Fou. This is a project founded in 2007 by Valentí Roqueta (Bages) in the Terra Alta. The winery is situated in the heart of Batea, in the main square of the municipality. Under the La Fou label the winery produces three wines :La Fou El Sender, with Ganatxa Negra; La Fou De Batea, also made with Garnatxa Negra; and then the white wine La Fou Els Amellers, made with Garnatxa Blanca, offering aromas of citrus, grapefruit, lemons, jasmine, notes of sweet fruit (apricot) with a background of dried fruit, contributing to a sense of volume and complexity in a set dominated by the initial freshness which is maintained over time.


7 Magnífics. This is a project sponsored by Bodegas Miguel Torres, who produces wine in various areas of Catalunya, in singular and unique vineyards. In this region the winery produces two different wines: Rebels de Batea, a red made with Garnacha Tinta, with a fresh, fruity and well balanced profile and rich nuances of ripe plum, light notes of wild herbs and a sharp mineral imprint of the calcareous soils. Then there is the white Rebels de Batea, made with the Garnacha Blanca variety from vines planted over 20 years ago, briefly aged in the barrel. This is a young and fresh wine, with fragrant aromas of melon, pear and apple, and floral notes of white flowers and nutmeg, which gives the wine a certain finesse and elegance. This is a balanced, pleasant and seductive white wine.


Celler Tern. This is a relatively new project founded by three companions, a vintner, winemaker and a viticulturist. The winery produces three different wines, the Tern Garnatxa Blanca, where a part of the wine is fermented in fine grain, medium toasted French oak barrels, followed by a 4 months ageing in the same barrels on its lees worked with bâtonnage. Then there is the red wine Tern Syrah, a young red wine made exclusively with the Syrah grape variety. Finally there is Arrel de Nou, a blend of Garnacha Tinta, Syrah and Cariñena, aged for 7 months in (300-500litre) first year French oak barrels.


 


 


 


 

Outstanding wines from the D.O. Terra Alta:

  • Via Edetana 2014

    Red wine Barrel. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Edetària. Grapes used in this wine: Garnacha Peluda.

    10,75 VAT incl.
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    9,90 €/u
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    Via Edetana 2014

    Red wine Barrel. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Edetària. Grapes used in this wine: Garnacha Peluda.

    10,75 VAT incl.
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    9,90 €/u
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  • Portal 2013

    Red wine Barrel. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Celler Piñol. Production area: Terra Alta. Grapes used in this wine: Syrah and Merlot and Garnacha Tinta and Cariñena.

    • Parker 92
    • Peñin 90
    11,05 VAT incl.
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    10,45 €/u
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    Portal 2013

    Red wine Barrel. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Celler Piñol. Production area: Terra Alta. Grapes used in this wine: Syrah and Merlot and Garnacha Tinta and Cariñena.

    • Parker: 92
    • Peñin: 90
    11,05 VAT incl.
    6x
    10,45 €/u
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  • Mendall Jose Maria 2015

    Red wine Barrel. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Laureano Serres Montagut. Production area: Terra Alta. Grapes used in this wine: Tempranillo.

    15,50 VAT incl.
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    14,70 €/u
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    Mendall Jose Maria 2015

    Red wine Barrel. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Laureano Serres Montagut. Production area: Terra Alta. Grapes used in this wine: Tempranillo.

    15,50 VAT incl.
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    14,70 €/u
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  • Herencia Altés Garnatxa Blanca 2015

    White wine Young. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Abanico. Production area: Terra Alta. Grapes used in this wine: Garnacha Blanca.

    • Parker 89
    7,20 VAT incl.
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    6,95 €/u
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    Herencia Altés Garnatxa Blanca 2015

    White wine Young. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Abanico. Production area: Terra Alta. Grapes used in this wine: Garnacha Blanca.

    • Parker: 89
    7,20 VAT incl.
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    6,95 €/u
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  • Edetària Selecció Blanc 2014

    White wine Crianza. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Edetària. Production area: Terra Alta. Grapes used in this wine: Macabeo and Garnacha Blanca.

    20,95 VAT incl.
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    19,90 €/u
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    Edetària Selecció Blanc 2014

    White wine Crianza. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Edetària. Production area: Terra Alta. Grapes used in this wine: Macabeo and Garnacha Blanca.

    20,95 VAT incl.
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    19,90 €/u
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  • Herencia Altés Garnatxa 2015

    Red wine Young. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Abanico. Production area: Terra Alta. Grapes used in this wine: Garnacha Tinta.

    7,20 VAT incl.
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    6,85 €/u
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    Herencia Altés Garnatxa 2015

    Red wine Young. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Abanico. Production area: Terra Alta. Grapes used in this wine: Garnacha Tinta.

    7,20 VAT incl.
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    6,85 €/u
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  • LaFou de Batea 2011

    Red wine Barrel. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Lafou. Production area: Terra Alta. Grapes used in this wine: Cabernet Sauvignon and Garnacha Tinta and Syrah.

    34,10 VAT incl.
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    LaFou de Batea 2011

    Red wine Barrel. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Lafou. Production area: Terra Alta. Grapes used in this wine: Cabernet Sauvignon and Garnacha Tinta and Syrah.

    34,10 VAT incl.
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  • Llàgrimes de Tardor Blanc 2014

    White wine Barrel. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Cooperativa Sant Josep de Bot. Production area: Terra Alta. Grapes used in this wine: Garnacha Blanca.

    • Peñin 90
    9,05 VAT incl.
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    8,55 €/u
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    Llàgrimes de Tardor Blanc 2014

    White wine Barrel. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Cooperativa Sant Josep de Bot. Production area: Terra Alta. Grapes used in this wine: Garnacha Blanca.

    • Peñin: 90
    9,05 VAT incl.
    6x
    8,55 €/u
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  • LaFou els Amelers 2015

    White wine Barrel. 4 months in oak barrels. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Lafou. Production area: Terra Alta. Grapes used in this wine: Garnacha Blanca.

    • Peñin 92
    13,05 VAT incl.
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    12,40 €/u
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    LaFou els Amelers 2015

    White wine Barrel. 4 months in oak barrels. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Lafou. Production area: Terra Alta. Grapes used in this wine: Garnacha Blanca.

    • Peñin: 92
    13,05 VAT incl.
    6x
    12,40 €/u
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  • Edetària Selecció 2014

    Red wine Barrel. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Edetària. Production area: Terra Alta. Grapes used in this wine: Cabernet Sauvignon and Cariñena and Syrah and Garnacha Peluda.

    • Peñin 93
    21,50 VAT incl.
    6x
    20,40 €/u
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    Edetària Selecció 2014

    Red wine Barrel. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Edetària. Production area: Terra Alta. Grapes used in this wine: Cabernet Sauvignon and Cariñena and Syrah and Garnacha Peluda.

    • Peñin: 93
    21,50 VAT incl.
    6x
    20,40 €/u
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  • Bàrbara Forés Abrisa't 2015

    White wine Young. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Bàrbara Forés. Production area: Terra Alta. Grapes used in this wine: Garnacha Blanca.

    15,55 VAT incl.
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    14,80 €/u
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    Bàrbara Forés Abrisa't 2015

    White wine Young. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Bàrbara Forés. Production area: Terra Alta. Grapes used in this wine: Garnacha Blanca.

    15,55 VAT incl.
    6x
    14,80 €/u
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  • Cent x Cent 2015

    White wine Young. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Vins del Tros. Production area: Terra Alta. Grapes used in this wine: Garnacha Blanca.

    10,50 VAT incl.
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    9,95 €/u
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    Cent x Cent 2015

    White wine Young. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Vins del Tros. Production area: Terra Alta. Grapes used in this wine: Garnacha Blanca.

    10,50 VAT incl.
    6x
    9,95 €/u
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  • Bàrbara Forés El Quintà 2014

    White wine Young. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Bàrbara Forés. Production area: Terra Alta. Grapes used in this wine: Garnacha Blanca.

    • Parker 91
    • Peñin 93
    14,45 VAT incl.
    6x
    13,75 €/u
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    Bàrbara Forés El Quintà 2014

    White wine Young. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Bàrbara Forés. Production area: Terra Alta. Grapes used in this wine: Garnacha Blanca.

    • Parker: 91
    • Peñin: 93
    14,45 VAT incl.
    6x
    13,75 €/u
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  • Bàrbara Forés Coma d'En Pou 2014

    Red wine Crianza. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Bàrbara Forés. Production area: Terra Alta. Grapes used in this wine: Cabernet Sauvignon and Garnacha Tinta and Syrah.

    19,50 VAT incl.
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    18,50 €/u
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    Bàrbara Forés Coma d'En Pou 2014

    Red wine Crianza. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Bàrbara Forés. Production area: Terra Alta. Grapes used in this wine: Cabernet Sauvignon and Garnacha Tinta and Syrah.

    19,50 VAT incl.
    6x
    18,50 €/u
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  • Mendall Abeurador blanc 2015

    White wine Young. 6 months on lees in stainless steel vats. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Laureano Serres Montagut. Production area: Terra Alta. Grapes used in this wine: Macabeo.

    • Decántalo 89
    15,45 VAT incl.
    6x
    14,65 €/u
    Out of stock!
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    Mendall Abeurador blanc 2015

    White wine Young. 6 months on lees in stainless steel vats. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Laureano Serres Montagut. Production area: Terra Alta. Grapes used in this wine: Macabeo.

    • Decántalo: 89
    15,45 VAT incl.
    6x
    14,65 €/u
    Out of stock!
    Sold out
    Online only
  • Bàrbara Forés El Templari 2014

    Red wine Barrel. 14 months in French oak barrels. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Bàrbara Forés. Production area: Terra Alta. Grapes used in this wine: Garnacha Tinta and Morenillo.

    • Parker 92
    11,60 VAT incl.
    6x
    11,10 €/u
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    Bàrbara Forés El Templari 2014

    Red wine Barrel. 14 months in French oak barrels. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Bàrbara Forés. Production area: Terra Alta. Grapes used in this wine: Garnacha Tinta and Morenillo.

    • Parker: 92
    11,60 VAT incl.
    6x
    11,10 €/u
    Online only
  • I TANT Garnacha Blanca 2015

    White wine Young. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: I TANT Vins. Production area: Terra Alta. Grapes used in this wine: Garnacha Blanca.

    6,90 VAT incl.
    6x
    6,60 €/u
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    I TANT Garnacha Blanca 2015

    White wine Young. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: I TANT Vins. Production area: Terra Alta. Grapes used in this wine: Garnacha Blanca.

    6,90 VAT incl.
    6x
    6,60 €/u
    Online only
  • Bàrbara Forés Negre 2013

    Red wine Barrel. 12 months in French, Allier oak barrels. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Bàrbara Forés. Production area: Terra Alta. Grapes used in this wine: Syrah and Merlot and Garnacha Tinta and Cariñena.

    9,35 VAT incl.
    6x
    8,90 €/u
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    Bàrbara Forés Negre 2013

    Red wine Barrel. 12 months in French, Allier oak barrels. Volume: 75 cl. Winery: Bàrbara Forés. Production area: Terra Alta. Grapes used in this wine: Syrah and Merlot and Garnacha Tinta and Cariñena.

    9,35 VAT incl.
    6x
    8,90 €/u
    Online only
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