Close your eyes and picture the scene. A wine region over 2,000 years old, and with a native grape variety that can only be found in these 300 hectares, a stones throw from Barcelona. A sandstone terroir, low in nutrients makes for a refreshing acidity, unparalled depth and the fantastic maturity indicative of the Pansa Blanca grape; a variety especially suited for aging.
The low nutrient character of sandstone, joined by a mountainous terrain of small parcels of vines have made the area resistant to industrial exploitation, allowing many of the region’s producers to maintain up to 60 hectares of 100 year old vines. The mountains also provide shelter, a variety of aspects and differing amounts of clay mixed with the sandstone. The perfect combination of idiosyncrasy, depth, texture, structure, and capacity to keep, makes ours a candidate for one of the world’s great wines. To top it all off, these wines are exceptionally easy to understand and enjoy, even for the uninitiated. Just ask yourself: Is this all a dream? No, it’s Alella.
Not only a one of its kind project, Raventós de Alella is the best expression of the passion of a new generation in following their dream to show the world the importance of one region and one variety. In these terms, the Pansa Blanca variety and the region of Alella are one and the same. By no means cold hearted exercise in showing how wine was made 2,000 years ago, the project is instead one of those discoveries that only comes once in the life of a dedicated viticulturist – if we’re lucky! And encouraged by the results, we won’t stop until Pansa Blanca has the reputation it deserves.
The winery itself is nestled between ancient vines and woodland on the inland face of the mountain ridge that runs through the centre of the D.O. Ever since 1981, when the first wine was produced in the modern winery, our philosophy has been to expand the possibilities of the region’s native grape, the Pansa Blanca. Thanks to the innovative, experimental and internationally minded nature of the winery, the result has been wines in constant evolution, but always respectful of the product and the area’s unique character. The grape is selected by hand, pressed whole and fermented at a low temperature in order to maintain the fruits properties. Where possible, each vineyard is pressed separately. By using small-scale fermentation tanks and casks, we are able to keep each harvest separate, thereby allowing us to discover the unique properties of each vineyard. Every day we’re discovering more.
With the vineyard situated so close to Barcelona, ever since the first production of Marqués de Alella (now called Raventós de Alella), we have fought against the encroaching urbanization of this unique area. Thankfully, the recent expansion of the Sierra de la Marina national park to include the area will now help us to maintain this important wine region, and the surrounding countryside, for years to come.