Cellers Baronia del Montsant is based in Cornudella de Montsant, a small, picturesque village just below the Montsant and Prades Mountains. Here, in the Montsant DO, they make serious red wines with the area’s traditional red varieties Carignan and Grenache. In Catalonia they are known as Carinyena and Garnatxa.
The area experiences the four seasons to their full. Winters are cold and snowfall common; when it melts it provides the vines with the much needed water reserves that will keep them going through the traditionally hot summer months.
Harvesting on the estate is done by hand and takes place around the second week of October. Generally the bunches are de-stemmed and after a light pressing are transported using gravity into tanks where each grape is vinified separately.
The two wines I have tasted have been very good. They are in the modern style, with an emphasis on new oak. What comes through most impressively however is a depth of flavour, a concentration of rich red berry fruit that shouts quality wine making.
Their top red wines show a meaty, savoury character combined with concentrated, juicy fruit and a long lingering finish. Englora, a blend of several red varieties, is named after one of the iconic peaks of the Montsant Mountains, which rise impressively beyond 1000 metres.
The source of this delicious concentration of fruit and flavour is in all liklihood the old vineyards. The Grenache is over 70 years old and the Carignan over 50. Both French and American oak are subsequently used for around 10 months.