The Priorat wine region, located in Catalonia, Spain, is renowned for its rugged landscapes, ancient vineyards, and exceptional wines. The region's terraced hillsides, composed of slate soils known as "licorella," provide unique growing conditions for the vineyards. Priorat wines are predominantly red, made from indigenous grape varieties such as Garnacha (Grenache) and Cariñena (Carignan). These wines are known for their intensity, complexity, and ability to age gracefully.
Priorat is located in the province of Tarragona in Catalonia, Spain. The closest major city is Barcelona, which is approximately 120 kilometers northeast of the region. To reach Priorat, you can fly into Barcelona-El Prat Airport and then take a rental car or public transportation to the various towns within the region. The drive from Barcelona to Priorat takes around 1.5 to 2 hours.
Wines of the region
Priorat is renowned for its high-quality red wines. The region's wines are often bold, full-bodied, and exhibit concentrated flavors of dark fruits, spices, and minerality. The predominant grape varieties used in Priorat wines are Garnacha (Grenache) and Cariñena (Carignan), although international varieties such as Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah are also utilized.
Wineries to explore
Famous wineries in the Priorat region that are worth exploring include Clos Mogador, Clos Erasmus, and Alvaro Palacios. These wineries have gained international acclaim for their exceptional wines and commitment to quality. For off the beaten track experiences, consider visiting smaller, family-owned wineries such as Mas Martinet, Terroir al Limit, and Mas Doix. These wineries offer a more intimate and personalized tasting experience, allowing you to discover hidden gems of the region.
The cuisine of Priorat reflects the rich flavors and traditional Catalan dishes. Local specialties include grilled meats, hearty stews, and seafood dishes. Some recommended restaurants in the region include Les Figueres in Falset, which offers a modern take on Catalan cuisine using local ingredients, and Restaurant Cal Llop in Gratallops, known for its excellent wine pairings and regional dishes.
In addition to wine tasting, Priorat offers various cultural activities to explore. Visit the stunning Siurana village perched on a cliff, known for its breathtaking views and historical significance. Explore the Carthusian monastery of Scala Dei, which played a significant role in the region's winemaking history. Outdoor enthusiasts can also enjoy hiking or cycling through the picturesque countryside, taking in the beautiful landscapes and vineyard vistas.