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Celler Pasanau

Pasanau Les Myriams 2016

Price: $33.00 (average US retail)
Size: 750ml
Winery: Celler Pasanau
Vintage Year: 2016
Country: Spain
Region: Cataluña
Appellation: D.O.C. Priorat


This Viognier proceeds from vineyards in La Morera de Montsant, Priorat's highest village. Planted in 1995, these are among the oldest Viognier vines in the region. Fresh and intense fruit with ample acidity and high minerality is balanced by a firm texture and sufficient structure to guarantee a long life in the bottle.

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Overview: The Pasanaus are perennial growers in La Morera, the highest municipality of Priorat, with vineyards at over 2,400 feet elevation abutting the sheer rock wall of the Sierra de Montsant. Gravelly scree eroded from the cliffs covers the underlying llicorella slate, together with the elevation creating a less Mediterranean microclimate relative to the region as a whole.

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History: The Pasanau family are perennial growers in Priorat, with vineyards located in the highest municipality of the region, literally skirting the sheer rock wall of the Sierra de Montsant which forms Priorat's viticultural boundary.

At over 2,400 feet, Pasanau's "Finca La Planeta" dominates the regional landscape and experiences Priorat's widest daily temperature variation. This helps to retain freshness in the concentrated, late-harvested grapes, resulting in a uniquely tight-knit, albeit typically powerful Priorat style.

Llicorella (decomposed slate) soils and a long, arid growing season, as elsewhere in Priorat, severely limit yields while packing the fruit with mineral extract and complexity.

Finca La Planeta is a three-hectare clearing hewn from the rocky base of the cliffs in the early 1980s, with gravelly topsoils covering the underlying regional slate (llicorella). The soil and altitude prompted Ricard Pasanau to plant Cabernet Sauvignon, vines now well over 20 years old. As in the rest of Priorat, yields are minuscule, only 13,000 bottles per year produced from this site.

In 1995 a modern bodega was completed for a maximum production of 50,000 bottles. Grapes are picked in mid- to late-October and transported to the bodega in 40-pound boxes for a light crushing and destemming. The must flows by gravity to stainless steel tanks of 5,000 and 10,000-liter capacity for fermentation at a maximum of 26° Centigrade. The freerun wine is aged nearly one year in a mixture of new American and French oak types. Clarification is done through racking and light egg white fining prior to bottling in late Spring, always during a full moon.

Pasanau also grows Garnacha, Merlot, Mazuelo and Syrah within the village of La Morera. 10% Garnacha is used to soften the Cabernet in Finca La Planeta. Ceps Nous, offering great value from Pasanau's youngest vines, was introduced in 2002.

As the most concentrated and least Mediterranean in style of all Priorat wines, Pasanau offers a unique perspective on this spectacular and ancient wine district.

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Pasanau Les Myriams

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