This wine, a blend of Garnacha, Carinena, Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah and Picapoll, is sourced from six of the nine villages of Gratallops. The 2010 has a dense colour then an attractive nose of forest floor, herbs, dark fruit and garrigue. Garnacha exuberance, albeit dignified, with dense serious grippy tannins and a fresh lively finish.
Alvaro Palacios is a little dismissive of the Romans, who had Taragona as their Catalonian headquarters, because they only planted grapes on the flattest and easiest terrain. The Carthusian monks, on the other hand, knew a thing or two about terroir and the terraced vineyards which they established in the 12th century around the small town of Gratallops still make up the heart of the Priorat Denominacion. Alvaro is eloquent and passionate about the heritage of his vines; monastic mysticism finds preternatural expression in the extraordinarily intense light here, a reward for a location 10 km away from the Mediterranean and over 4000 hours of sunshine a year. The vineyards are steep and marked by the distinctive licorelle slate soil, the result of ancient tectonic compression of clay-based igneous rock.
Simon Field MW, Fine Wine Buyer
The sensual 2010 Gratallops is sourced from several tiny parcels around the village that lends its name. It is a blend of 65% Garnacha, 15% Samso, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon and 10% Syrah cropped at just 9 hectoliters per hectare. It has a lovely, sensual bouquet where the Garnacha really shines: boysenberry, lavender, potpourri and a touch of kirsch that are all beautifully defined. You don’t know whether to drink it or stroke it. It is showing a little oak at the moment, although it will be subsumed with time. The palate is medium-bodied with a fleshy, well-defined entry, blackberry, raspberry, white pepper and a little game vying for attention. The tannins are fine and supple, while the finish is harmonious and caressing.
Neal Martin - Wine Advocate - Issue#200 Apr 2012