Profile of La Conreria de Scala Dei

La Conreria de Scala Dei, Priorat - Spain

La Conreria de Scala Dei has to be one of the most beautifully located wineries in the Iberian Peninsula. Nestled in the ancient village of Scala Dei, right under the beautiful Montsant ("holy mountain") and just next to the 12th century Cartoixa d' Scala-Dei, a stunning monastery in ruins, today the symbol of the chic Priorat wine region. This top end winery, run by three partners (one of whom is a priest), is particularly well-known for making exciting white wines with the native Garnacha Blanca grape (Grenache Blanc). Priorat is not the most famous of Spanish wine regions for whites; one usually thinks of the blockbuster, high alcohol reds (which La Conreria d' Scala Dei also make) adored by American, French and British wine critics. But wines such as "Nona" and "Les Brugueres" stand out in the sea of wines, as unusual, interesting and deliciously memorable. They are both creamy, oily even, and need food.

Visiting La Conreria de Scala Dei is a treat. Winemaker Jordi Vidal, one of the most modest and talented enologists in the area, will let you taste a sample of the "black wines" from the barrel and have a peek around the micro boutique winery. The cellars lead out to a vineyard with views over the gorgeous mountains.

Robert Parker

Les Brugueres 2003 (92? Points)- "This is one of the more reasonably priced wineries from the fashionable Priorat appellation. The question mark affixed to the score of the 2003 Les Brugueres is basically a warning. This is an intriguing (I loved it) wine with a murky light gold color. The color should alert tasters that something is going on here.and a lot is. Made from 100+-year-old vines of white Grenache, it exhibits a remote similarity to a top-flight white Ch?teauneuf du Pape. Very kinky, it reveals aromas of linseed oil, melted wax, ripe fruits (particularly peach and lychee), and underlying minerality. Dry, full-bodied, and powerful, with the intensity of a substantial red in its flavor profile, it is one of those "love it or leave it" dry whites. Although unusual to my tastes, it is brilliant."- Parker

Wines Produced

Iugiter Dry Red. Blend of 85% Garnacha tinta (negre), 10% Cabernet & 5% Carineña. 6 months in new American oak. Decant.
Les Brugueres Dry White. Young. 100% Garnacha blanca, 100 year old vines. Single vineyard wine. Fermented in stainless steel and only lightly filtered.
Nona Dry White. Aged. 100% Garnacha blanca. Cask fermented and 3 months aging in new French oak
Laudes 65% Garnacha tinta (negre) & 35% Cabernet Sauvignon. Decant.

Winery Facts & Figures

D.O.: Priorat/ Priorato
Founded: 1997
Owner: Josep Maria Mitjans
Managing Director: Jaume Sabater
Winemaker:Jordi Vidal
Area under Vine: 13 ac own vineyards, 4 ha controlled vineyards
Oak: 40 American oak barrels, 38 French oak barrels
Grape Varietals: Garnacha Tinta (Grenache Noir), Cabernet Sauvignon, Cariñena (Carignan), Merlot, Garnacha Blanca (Grenache Blanc)

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