Mas Martinet Els Escurcons 2017
Escurçons is exclusively made of Red Grenache and comes from the vineyard of the same name situated within the lands of Gratallops village wines at the top of the Serra Alta hill.
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Founded in the heart of the Priorat by Josep Lluis Perez and his family in 1986, Mas Martinet’s exceptional achievements caused a ripple effect that spurred the momentum resulting in grand advancements for the region. Since 2001, Josep Lluis’ daughter, Sara Perez has been responsible for all wines produced at Mas Martinet. Today, the wines of Priorat are some of Spain's most compelling, and Mas Martinet remains at the vanguard of the region's top producers.
Sara Pérez is widely regarded as among the most talented and innovative young winemakers, and not just in Priorat or Spain. While her wines faithfully reflect the grapes of the vineyard in any given year, Sara’s skill, hard work and impeccable timing is what pushes her wines into the realm of greatness.
Tiny and entirely composed of craggy, jagged and deeply terraced vineyards, Priorat is a Catalan wine-producing region that was virtually abandoned until the early 1990s. Its renaissance came with the arrival of one man, René Barbier, who recognized the region’s forgotten potential. He banded with five friends to create five “Clos” in the village of Gratallops. Their aim was to revive some of Priorat’s ancient Carignan vines, as well as plant new—mainly French—varieties. These winemakers were technically skilled, well-trained and locally inspired; not surprisingly their results were a far cry from the few rustic and overly fermented wines already produced.
This movement escalated Priorat’s popularity for a few reasons. Its new wines were modern and made with well-recognized varieties, namely old Carignan and Grenache blended with Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. When the demand arrived, scarcity commanded higher prices and as the region discovered its new acclaim, investors came running from near and far. Within ten years, the area under vine practically doubled.
Priorat’s steep slopes of licorella (brown and black slate) and quartzite soils, protection from the cold winds of the Siera de Monstant and a lack of water, leading to incredibly low vine yields, all work together to make the region’s wines unique. While similar blends could and are produced elsewhere, the mineral essence and unprecedented concentration of a Priorat wine is unmistakable.
Grenache thrives in any warm, Mediterranean climate where ample sunlight allows its clusters to achieve full phenolic ripeness. While Grenache's birthplace is Spain (there called Garnacha), today it is more recognized as the key player in the red blends of the Southern Rhône, namely Châteauneuf-du-Pape, Côtes du Rhône and its villages. Somm Secret—The Italian island of Sardinia produces bold, rustic, single varietal Grenache (there called Cannonau). California, Washington and Australia have achieved found success with Grenache, both flying solo and in blends.