Familia Torres recently invited sommeliers and wine writers to discover the latest vintages of the five wines that comprise the Antología Miguel Torres collection. The presentations, held in Barcelona and Madrid, were led by Miguel Torres Maczassek, fifth generation Familia Torres, and Josep Sabarich, the winery's technical director. The events mark the beginning of a tour that will take the wines to a dozen countries around the world. At both in-person and virtual events, Familia Torres will explain the particular characteristics of their flagship wines, which embody the winery's firm commitment to sustainability and regenerative viticulture as a way of combating climate change.
The five wines represent a journey for the senses that highlights different Catalan appellations of origin. The route begins in Conca de Barberà with the Chardonnay Milmanda 2018 – the only white wine in the collection – and continues on to Penedès, the homeland of Familia Torres, with the legendary Mas La Plana and Reserva Real, both 2017 vintages. After a return to Conca in the company of Grans Muralles 2017, the journey concludes in Priorat with Mas de la Rosa 2018 – the contribution which the fifth generation of Familia Torres has made to this collection of iconic wines that Miguel A. Torres began fifty years ago.
True reflections of their place of origin, these five wines allow nature to express itself freely, revealing vintage variation and emphasizing the exuberance of the wine. What they have in common is elegance and freshness. They are Mediterranean wines that can be enjoyed now or laid down to observe their evolution in the bottle, which will certainly enhance their aromatic complexity. The decision is up to the consumer.
“What matters most to us in terms of these wines is respecting the expression of the vineyard and the vintage,” states Miguel Torres Maczassek, “We emphasize the natural freshness of these very balanced wines to obtain a more exuberant profile.”
Milmanda 2018 (DO Conca de Barberà)
The estate of Milmanda Castle, located in the municipality of Vimbodí (Tarragona), has deep clay soils and a Mediterranean climate with a continental influence – ideal conditions for Chardonnay to thrive. The resulting wines display a distinctive varietal character and are well suited to oak ageing. Milmanda made its debut in 1985 and is considered one of the great Spanish Chardonnays. 2018 was a cool year, which favoured slow, balanced fruit maturation. The wine was made with great care to help preserve its natural freshness, using indigenous yeasts from the vineyard. According to Josep Sabarich, “we're doing less and less malolactic fermentation, and we're reducing the time spent in oak so that its influence is much more subtle”.
Mas La Plana 2017 (DO Penedès)
Mas La Plana is the oldest of all the wines that make up the Antología collection. The very first vintage – 1970 – won the Paris Wine Olympics in 1979, an event that marked a turning point for Familia Torres and its production of quality wines. The 2017 vintage was very dry with moderate temperatures, which led to a reduction in crop production and required much more labour-intensive work in the vineyard, as well as careful monitoring of fruit maturation in order to harvest each parcel at exactly the right time. In describing the wine, Sabarich remarks that “Mas La Plana is a carefully crafted blend of many different batches of Cabernet Sauvignon, from different parcels, harvested at different times, and vinified in three types of vats – oak, steel, and concrete – depending on what we wanted to emphasize”.
Reserva Real 2017 (DO Penedès)
Situated close to Mas La Plana in the foothills of the pre-coastal mountains, the Les Arnes vineyard (DO Penedès) presents similar vintage characteristics – little rainfall and mild temperatures – resulting in very healthy grapes, even though vigour was low. Combined with the slate soils of the estate – one of a kind in Penedès – these conditions brought about a 2017 vintage that is more food friendly, displaying lovely freshness and elegance.
Grans Muralles 2017 (DO Conca de Barberà)
In Conca de Barberà, 2017 was also a dry year with relatively normal temperatures, although the end of the growth season was cooler than usual. Situated close to the Poblet monastery, the vineyard has slate soils which also exert an influence on the wine, composed of five indigenous varieties – two of them ancestral – that play a decisive role in the end result. Each variety is vinified in different ways, using different kinds of tanks or vats, in different sizes, and the length of ageing also varies. In this vintage, the spotlight is on Cariñena rather than Garnacha to prolong the tension and freshness of the wine, while the ancestral grape Querol continues to comprise 10% of the blend as in previous years. Miguel Torres describes Grans Muralles 2017 as a “wine that is very true to the vintage, fresh, with a clearly Mediterranean profile”.
Mas de la Rosa 2018 (DOQ Priorat)
In Priorat, 2018 was an excellent vintage, with cool temperatures and rainfall during the growth cycle. This allowed for the slow, gradual ripening of the eighty-year-old vines of Mas de la Rosa, a vineyard planted on steep hillsides (costers) with llicorella schist soils, which is already inherently cool thanks to its location, elevation, and orientation. Cariñena once again steals the spotlight from Garnacha, revealing its freshest and most elegant side. The winemaking approach is simple, with brief maceration and ageing in 1500-litre foudres to minimize the oak influence. This is the third vintage of a wine known for its great finesse and elegance. The most exclusive of all Familia Torres wines springs from the personal initiative of Miguel Torres Maczassek who sought to capture the singular personality of this beautiful Priorat enclave.