A wine made from separate plots of vines owned by 20 different Porrera locals, the aim being to make a textbook expression of the area, and put some money back into the hands of the local people. The Vall Llach team oversee all the vineyard decisions. Mainly Carignan but, like Idus, comprising five varietals in total, this is perhaps less plush than Embruix and shows more of the spicy, fresh, licorella slate character of the region. Aged in a mixture of new and one year old French oak, there is more structure than Embruix and more focus, with flecks of graphite intermingled with dark berry fruit, smoky notes, prunes and river stones. Powerful, concentrated and brooding, with a mile long echoing finish that reverberates with fresh, dark fruit notes and minerals. Superb.
An estate based in Porrera, Priorato, established in the 1990s by famous Catlalan singer Lluis Lach, Vall Llach has been making waves in in the world of wine and has no doubt been partly responsible for the great enthusiasm that currently surrounds Priorat wine. Old vines Carinena is the key here (60-90 years old) together with natural, attentive wine-growing. Three wines are made Embruix, into which some of the younger fruit goes, Idus and Vall Llach both of which are old vine cuvees aged in new french oak. These are hedonists' wines, exhibiting glorious, voluptuous fruit.
Having seen a total revolution in the past twenty years Priorat now makes some of the worlds finest grenache based wines, making use of a particular slate and quartz soil type known locally as llicorella. And some incredibly old vines. Single vineyard sites have been identified, winemaking techniques have undergone a revolution and Priorat can now justly identify itself as one of the world's most exciting wine making appellations.