Vall Llach Idus 2007
Other Red Blends from Priorat, Spain
Vall Llach Idus is an elegant and modern wine which surprises with the mineral tones provided by the Cariñena vines, balanced and structured by the inclusion of other varieties such as Merlot, Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon... The skilled use of these varieties confers on the wine a profound complexity of aroma and flavor which is both persistent and soft on the palate.
A blend of 40% Cariñena (old vineyards), 30% Merlot, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Garnacha, and 10% Syrah
The Wine Advocate - "The 2007 Idus de Vall-Llach was produced from older vines, some of it purchased, with the focus on Carinena. It received nearly the same elevage as the Embruix while spending 14 months in French oak. Purple/black in color, it exhibits a brooding aromatic array of wet stone, licorice, fruitcake, plum, and blackberry. Thick, rich, and full-bodied on the palate, it has layers of fruit, a silky texture, and impeccable balance. Give it 2-3 years of additional cellaring and drink it from 2013 to 2027."
International Wine Cellar - "Glass-staining ruby. Powerful, pungent aromas of candied dark berries, cola and vanilla, with woodsmoke and black cardamom accents gaining strength with air. Sappy and expansive, offering youthful blackberry and bitter cherry flavors and a jolt of peppery spices. Finishes sweet and long, with lingering mocha and floral qualities."
Wine Enthusiast - "Ripe and sweet, with lush, raisiny aromas. The palate is flush, deep and layered, with baked berry, prune, toast and coffee flavors. This is a lot like Vall Llach's signature '07, but it's a bit more restrained and at $50 it's a better deal than the $95 wine."
Wine & Spirits - "Liqueur-like and voluptuous, the weight of this wine's ripeness completely fills the tannic structure provided by the fruit of ancient carinena vines, the basis of this blend. Decadently delicious, it has the bones to support all that massive, robust flavor. A match for oxtail."
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Vall Llach Winery
From its founding in the early 1990s, by famed Spanish singer Lluís Llach and notary Enric Costa, Vall Llach winemaking has been governed by a commitment to rigor and quality. The winery lies in the tiny village of Porerra, in southern Catalonia, in the highly-acclaimed D.O.Q. Priorat. Here, the magnificent century-old vineyard estates of Vall Llach are home to 60- to 90-year-old Cariñena and Garnacha vines.
Old vines naturally produce low yields, and Vall Llach reduces yields even further through careful vineyard management for densely concentrated wines. Vineyards climb steep slate hillsides, receiving optimum sun exposure and beneficial water deprivation, further concentrating the fruit. Newer plantings of Garnacha, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Syrah add complexity to the old-vine character, and the resulting wines - Vall Llach, Idus, and Embruix - have received high critical acclaim. View all Vall Llach Wines
About PrioratView a map of Priorat wineries (pree-ohr-aht) Spain, sparking envy among collectors. The region has become something of a cult wine producer, creating wines that cost up to 5 times that of a quality Rioja. The region has a special soil, called llicorella made of a brown slate mixed together with rocks. Mountains surround the area and the vines are tended by hand.
Notable FactsThe red wines here are based on Garnacha, and produce inky wine with intense fruit flavors of blackberry and plums, not to mention a required minimum of 13.5% alcohol. The secondary grape of the region is Carinena (Carignan in France). This grape has lost favor in most parts of the world due to its rustic nature, but here in Priorat it's a welcome structural addition to the Garnacha based wines.
The most popular red varieties of Spain include Tempranillo and Garnacha (Grenache). Whites don't garner quite as much recognition, but there are some regional varieties not to be missed, like Albarino and Verdejo. The popular red regions of Spain include Rioja, known for its outstanding wines of the Tempranillo grape; Ribera del Duero, producing high quality reds from Tempranillo and Garnacha; Galacia, with the sub-region of Rias Baixas, home to the deliciously crisp and floral Albarino grape; and Priorat, a region increasing in popularity with its high-quality cult reds. Other regions of note are Rueda, growing the Verdejo grape, La Mancha, a wide desert region, covered in the most planted white variety in the world, Airen, and Jumilla, making wines based on Monastrell (Mourvedre).
Spain's wine laws are based on the Denominacion de Origen (DO) classification system, devised in the 1930's. A four tiered system, the most basic level is Vina de Mesa (table wine) followed by Vino de la Tierra (country wine), DO and at the top DOC. Currently, only Rioja and Priorat have DOC status, while over 65 DO's scatter the country.
Most DO regions are classified and regulated by how long they age the wines. On a red wine label, one may find the terms Crianza, Reserva or Gran Reserva, denoting the wine's barrel and bottle time. Crianza is usually two years between barrel and bottle (the time in each depends on the DO and/or the winemaker), Reserva up to 4 years and Gran Reserva 5 – 6 years. Classifications of each region and wine are controlled by the region's Consejo Regulador.
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