Red wine Barrel. 10 months in French oak barrels used. Winery: Jorge Ordoñez. D.O. Montsant. (Catalonia) Variety: Syrah, Mazuela and Garnacha Tinta.
Red wine Barrel. 12 months in French oak barrels. Winery: Celler de Capçanes. D.O. Montsant. (Catalonia) Variety: Cabernet Sauvignon, Garnacha Tinta, Syrah and Merlot.
Red wine Crianza. 11 months in French, American and Hungarian oak barrels. Winery: Mas de la Caçadora. D.O. Montsant. (Catalonia) Variety: Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Garnacha Tinta and Cariñena.
White wine Aged in amphorae Natural. 8 months in amphoras. Winery: Vins Nus. D.O. Montsant. (Catalonia) Variety: Garnacha Gris
Sweet wine Young. Winery: Orto Vins. D.O. Montsant. (Catalonia) Variety: Garnacha Tinta
Red wine Barrel. 8 months in French oak barrels. Winery: Clos de L'Ona. D.O. Montsant. (Catalonia) Variety: Cabernet Sauvignon, Garnacha Tinta, Cariñena, Syrah and Merlot.
Red wine Aged in amphorae Respectful agriculture. 18 months in amphoras. Winery: Venus La Universal. D.O. Montsant. (Catalonia) Variety: Garnacha Tinta
Red wine Crianza. 12 months in French and American oak barrels. Winery: Coca i Fitó. D.O. Montsant. (Catalonia) Variety: Syrah, Cariñena and Garnacha Tinta.
Red wine Crianza. 10 months in French oak barrels. Winery: Venus La Universal. D.O. Montsant. (Catalonia) Variety: Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Garnacha Tinta and Cariñena.
Red wine Crianza Respectful agriculture. 12 months in an inox tank. Winery: Celler Comunica. D.O. Montsant. (Catalonia) Variety: Samsó
White wine Young. Winery: Masroig. D.O. Montsant. (Catalonia) Variety: Macabeo and Garnacha Blanca.
Red wine Barrel. 10 months in French oak barrels. Winery: Vendrell-Rived. D.O. Montsant. (Catalonia) Variety: Garnacha Tinta and Cariñena.
Red wine Crianza. Winery: Ediciones I-Limitadas. D.O. Montsant. (Catalonia) Variety: Cabernet Sauvignon, Garnacha Tinta, Syrah and Cariñena.
Rosé wine Barrel Organic. Winery: Josep Grau Viticultor. D.O. Montsant. (Catalonia) Variety: Garnacha Tinta and Garnacha Blanca.
Montsant is located in the central sector of the province of Tarragona, occupying an area that almost completely surrounds tbe DOQ Priorat, bounded by a semicircle of mountains. To the north it borders the mountains of Montsant and Llena and to the east the mountains of Prades. To the south, it opens towards the Ebro River and the nearby Mediterranean Sea.
The history of vine growing in the region dates back many centuries. There is some evidence of this with the discovery of a Roman settlement in the town of Marca, in which several jars were found that were used to store wine and allegedly transport it to the great Tarraco. However the rise of growing grapes came about during the Middle Ages, thanks to the Carthusian monks of Scaladei, who installed their monastery in the area. The monks brought new cultivation techniques and a new vision in winemaking, triggering an exponential rise of the vine growig in the area.
Since then, wine production has been constant in the region of Montsant. In the nineteenth century, Montsant wines were exported to Bordeaux, with some wines even managing to win prizes in major international exhibitions.
Still there was no official designation of origin in Spain. These were times of quantity versus quality, but Montsant was highlighted as a special area for winemaking. In the late nineteenth century came phylloxera, a devastating plague that wiped out many of the vineyards triggering a crisis. To cope with the situation, cooperatives were created to help help keep growing in the area Some of them are still active. today
In 1932 Tarragona and Priorat were recognised as designations of origin and Montsant was thus encompassed under the name Tarragona, in the subzone of Falset. It was not until 2001 when Montsant was given designation of origin status, recognising the specific characteristics of the wines grown in this area.
Character: grape, soil and climate
Severeal different grape varieties are grown and authorised by the DO Montsant, but its the Grenache and Carignan varieties that are by far the most dominent. These two varieties really capture the character of the region.
The Grenache is a very drought resistant variety, so it is a variety widely cultivated in warm areas of the Iberian Peninsula, when overripe, it reaches high concentrations of sugar. It produces wines with high alcohol content, full-bodied and low acidity with aromas of ripe black fruit, raisins and some balsamic.
Carignan, or Samsó as it is called in the area, is commonly used to counteract the oxidation of the Grenache. It produces a very elegant and silky wine when it comes from old vines. These are very nice wines with delicate and elegant aromas. To a lesser extent, we also find Tempranillo, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Mourvèdre, and Syrah Picapoll Negre. In addition, the white varieties Macabeo and Garnacha Blanca are also grown.
Montsant is in a mountainous area with a very rugged and steep terrain except in the South part, which is a flat area, the point where the river Ebro opens. The region is home to three different soil types: compact soils formed by sediments that come from different rivers, granitic soils with low organic content and rocky slate floors, known as licorella in the area, and soils poor in organic matter which provide a very special mineral character to the wines.
The weather in Montsant is marked by three factors: the mountains, the influence of the Ebro River and the Mediterranean winds. Winters are cold and dry, summers are hot. The mountains stand in the way of the influence of the sea, making the temperature drop during periods of maturation, the differences between day and night are accentuated.
Rainfall is around 500-600 litres / m2 per year. Rainfall is concentrated mainly in spring and autumn, leaving dry winters and summers. In summer, the winds off the sea bring some moisture to the vines.
Main wineries in Montsant
Most wines made in Montsant are red wines. Montsant wines are wines with a great extraction of colour and are wide and fleshy, especially those from old vines, vines over 50 years old are considered and kept as a treasure.
White wines are also made usually from Macabeo and Garnacha Blanca, although definitely on a smaller scale. White wines are often fermented in barrels, creating complex wines with many nuances.
Montsant is composed of numerous small wineries, working in a traditional way. Here are some of the wineries that the region has to offer:
Celler de Capçanes is a cooperative founded in 1933 that currently brings together 125 members. Curiously, Celler de Capçanes was the first winery to produce kosher wine in Spain.
Josep Grau Viticultor or Acústic Celler are examples of modern wineries, but with a clear commitment to tradition during the production process.
Venus La Universal is another young winery in the hands of a historical name, the fourth generation of the Barbier, they hold a strong commitment to organic farming.
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