FAMILIA TORRES: CHAPTERS IN A LIFE (IV)

Paris 1979: In the world's spotlight

Miguel A. Torres Riera. Almost five decades marked by experience, continuous reinvention and, most importantly, great fulfillment. But his rise within the winery wasn't always easy: a successful, charismatic and detail-oriented father, studies abroad and, finally, the wine that would change everything...

 

 

The winery’s incredible growth under Miguel Torres Carbó paved the way for his son and the current president, Miguel A. Torres Riera. With his bold and creative approach, he made Familia Torres wines what they are today: paradigms of quality, environmental awareness and enological innovation.  


 

The year: 1979.

The wine: Gran Coronas Etiqueta Negra.

The place: Paris.

 

Four decades ago, Miguel A. Torres dreamt up an idea for a different and daring wine, which came to represent a step forward in the country's staid winemaking tradition: Mas La Plana. A Cabernet Sauvignon dressed in black, sporting a Burgundy-style bottle.

 

Mas La Plana vineyard (Pacs del Penedès)

 

The birth of Mas La Plana was undeniably bold and ahead of its time, but on the long road traveled since, the wine has become the perfect ambassador of the Torres family's values and ideals, as well as one of the finest exponents of methodical, respectful and passionate viticulture.


 

The wine was Miguel A. Torres's way of giving expression to the Cabernet Sauvignon vines he had planted in the Mas La Plana vineyard in 1966, which had revolutionized the Spanish wine world. What else could one expect? Clearly it was not going to go unnoticed...


 

Few had confidence in the project. Even his father, Miguel Torres Carbó, had his doubts, regarding the endeavor with a certain degree of skepticism: “How can a Spanish Cabernet in a Burgundy bottle be a good wine?”


 

In 1979, and without having come to any kind of consensus, father and son decided to enter the controversial wine in the era's most prestigious competition, the Wine Olympics in Paris, organized by the trade magazine Gault & Millau. The judges would settle the matter once and for all.

 

 

Image of the Mas La Plana 1970 bottle and its top spot at the Wine Olympics in Paris (1979)

 

 

No one, however, could have predicted that in an astonishing turn of events, Mas La Plana 1970 would defeat the world's most acclaimed Cabernets, inspiring the legend of a wine that—vintage after vintage—offers a tangible reflection of the power of idealism and the determination of the man who created it. Since the very first vintage, Mas La Plana has won more international awards than any other Spanish wine, becoming an iconic legend that has transcended time.


 

Today Miguel A. Torres not only represents the winery but an entire sector that has recognized him and his work on numerous occasions throughout his career. He and his wife Waltraud Maczassek, his greatest ally, have spent a lifetime together.


 

Mas La Plana is the legacy and result of over forty vintages worth of experience, with an origin story that has crossed the threshold from history to legend. After all, every creative act born from the will of a nonconformist tends to cause a stir—these kinds of creations might be met with initial bewilderment, but they are necessary; they transcend time and advance our civilization.  

 

 

Vat room at Mas La Plana (Pacs del Penedès)

 

 

 

Founder of the Torres & Earth program

In 2007, Miguel A. Torres gained a real awareness of our planet's precarious situation thanks to Al Gore's documentary An Inconvenient Truth, which clearly and scientifically explains the devastating consequences of climate change. This is when he decided to launch a project aimed at mitigating the effects of global warming and its direct impact on the grapevine, as well as studying and designing measures to adapt to this new climatic reality.

 

The program's main objectives prioritize the reduction of per-bottle carbon emissions, the reduction of energy consumption, the protection of biodiversity in our environment, and responsible water usage, among others, with a clear commitment to innovation in the search for a sustainable production model.


 

Miguel A. Torres's environmental commitment has made him the finest possible ambassador for the Earth, the vineyard and the environment.



 

“The land is our livelihood. We live for and because of it. We owe it to the generations that learned to listen to the Earth, to understand and respect it. Our land represents a direct link to these generations: an undeniably great legacy but more importantly, a challenge and a great responsibility.”

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