Essential Magazine February 2022

Page 168

b THE GOURMET wine

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PRIORATO

HOW TWO LUMINARIES FOUNDED A WINE REGION No lover of wine will expect a prize for nominating the most wellknown Spanish regions: La Rioja, Ribera del Duero, Jerez, Rías Baíxas, Jumilla, etc. But how many can identify the other 62? It just so happens that the regions which sell the most wine also produce the most, so the system feeds on itself, but aren’t there lesser-known regions that deserve to be recognised more widely? WORDS ANDREW J LINN PHOTOGRAPHY COURTESY OF CLOS MOGADOR

I

t is very seldom that, anywhere in the winemaking world, an entire wine production area has become established thanks mainly to the efforts of two people. But this is just one of the reasons that the area known as Priorato is so fascinating. Located in the foothills of the Pyrenees, about 60 km from Barcelona, the journey used to take more than three hours over rutted tracks, now fortunately improved by tarmac. It was originally the preserve of religious orders, in this case

168 / FEBRUARY 2022 ESSENTIAL MAGAZINE

Carthusian monks in the 12th century. They were prepared to bear freezing winters and sizzling summers in the name of their faith. But these hardy monks always brought vines from wherever they came in order to make communion wine (not for the sustenance of the brothers, of course). Priorato means priory, so the thread is easy to follow. Nevertheless, a more inhospitable location for growing grapes would be hard to envisage. Terraces were manually hacked out of steep mountain sides, and what little

soil that existed was hidden under layers of rock. Even today the vineyards are worked almost as they were in the 19th century, using mules and not employing chemicals. There is possibly no other wine region anywhere like this one. Garnacha and Cariñena are the commonest grapes, with minimal amounts of white and rosado varieties. There are few wine regions with such a low grape production per hectare, in this case 2,000 kilos as opposed to the 10,000 kilos for many ‘industrial’ wineries.


Articles inside

Priorato Wine Region article cover image

Priorato Wine Region

5min
pages 168-174
Vino Mio article cover image

Vino Mio

4min
pages 156-159
MICHELIN Young Spanish Chef, Mario Cachinero article cover image

MICHELIN Young Spanish Chef, Mario Cachinero

4min
pages 164-167
Gourmet Bytes article cover image

Gourmet Bytes

3min
pages 160-163
Business News article cover image

Business News

5min
pages 146-155
The CBD Boom article cover image

The CBD Boom

6min
pages 140-143
Beard Grooming Products article cover image

Beard Grooming Products

3min
pages 136-139
Hero’s 12 Step Journey article cover image

Hero’s 12 Step Journey

6min
pages 144-145
MFG Group – Luxury Built on Quality article cover image

MFG Group – Luxury Built on Quality

7min
pages 100-109
NARS, One-of-a-Kind Beauty article cover image

NARS, One-of-a-Kind Beauty

4min
pages 132-135
Luscious Lingerie article cover image

Luscious Lingerie

2min
pages 128-131
Bo Concept – Streamlining Timeless Classics article cover image

Bo Concept – Streamlining Timeless Classics

6min
pages 110-119
Virtual Fitness Technology article cover image

Virtual Fitness Technology

4min
pages 90-93
BMW i4 EV Sports Saloon article cover image

BMW i4 EV Sports Saloon

5min
pages 70-77
Hotel Silken El Pilar, Estepona article cover image

Hotel Silken El Pilar, Estepona

3min
pages 36-43
Fiji – Lacaula Island article cover image

Fiji – Lacaula Island

6min
pages 26-35
Hot New Films article cover image

Hot New Films

2min
pages 78-81
Priyanka Chopra article cover image

Priyanka Chopra

8min
pages 60-69
Cool New Series article cover image

Cool New Series

3min
pages 82-85
The Metaverse article cover image

The Metaverse

5min
pages 44-49
70s Rock Groups article cover image

70s Rock Groups

6min
pages 50-59
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