If you like Spanish wine, you probably know Rioja, but what about Priorat? Despite producing some of the best grapes in Spain, this remote corner of Catalonia is still under the radar. Until now.
Grand Hotel Mas d’en Bruno
Last month, the elegant Gran Hotel Mas d’en Bruno opened in Priorat among the celebrities, becoming the latest member of the independent Relais & Châteaux luxury hotels. Set in a beautiful location in the heart of this famous wine region, Gran Hotel Mas d’en Bruno is a luxury hotel that offers guests a peaceful and tranquil retreat in the Catalan countryside.
And then there is wine.
Unlike Rioja’s Tempranillo wines which are usually oaky, Priorat wines are made from Grenache and Carignan. Bright, smooth and powerful, they often sell for a higher price than most Spanish wines, and feature prominently in many of the country’s best restaurants.
This is the Priorat
Located about two hours south of Barcelona and less than an hour from Tarragona, Priorat is defined by its unique microclimate and soils that give the wines from here their unique character. The area was named after the first place in Scala Dei, where a group of Carthusian monks who arrived from France started making wine in the 12th century. Today, Cellers Scala Dei is still one of the most important wineries in the area.
Although many of Spain’s food and wine regions have been awarded the “Denominación de Origen” (DO) designation that protects products from their terroir, only two of Spain’s wine regions – Rioja and Priorat – have been awarded the top DOC category. , “Denominación de Origen Calificada” (DOQ in Catalan). Unlike Rioja, where there are 500 wineries that produce more than 300 million bottles of wine a year, the small Priorat has nine villages and only 114 wineries.
Introducing Priorat to new travelers
Although the red wines from here – often bold and full-bodied, with lots of fruit, herbs and spices on the nose – are among the most prized in Spain, connoisseurs are dying to hear about the region. , not to mention the visit. However, David Stein, Founder and Chairman of The Stein Group which operates Mas d’en Bruno, believes it is time for this to change.
“By opening Mas d’en Bruno in Priorat, we want to lead tours and stays for wine lovers, thereby reviving the entire region and its regions with a new and exclusive concept,” he says.
Stein continues: “This region is an undiscovered gem that produces some of Spain’s best wines, and we spared no expense in creating the perfect, relaxing environment for our guests to discover this hidden treasure.”
Located in the middle of green vineyards, the Mas d’en Bruno estate has two large buildings, the Masía and the Atelier, which combine history with modern amenities. The hotel has 24 spacious rooms, each with a double-sided fireplace, vineyard views and privacy. There is also a full-service spa, infinity pool, library, and private wine cellar, as well as two bars and two restaurants. At Vinum, the hotel’s fine dining restaurant, the head sommelier creates the chef’s fine dining menus.
Things to do in Priorat
Guest experiences at the resort include everything from olive oil tastings, to astronomy like stargazing, and wine tastings led by top local producers. Meanwhile, history buffs may want to visit the village of Siurana, which is known for its small Romanesque temple, the remains of an ancient Arab palace from the ninth century, and its stunning views of the nearby mountains of Montsant and Siurana. database.
The more adventurous will enjoy the many outdoor activities on offer – from cycling to rock climbing – while wine lovers will be busy from morning to night tasting the best the region has to offer.
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