Álvaro Palacios


'Les Aubaguetes' Garnatxa blend 2019


This is a marvellous vineyard in the village of Bellmunt, an old mining town on the southern border of Priorat. Aubaguetes faces north across a valley to its sister over the way, Finca Dofi in Gratallops. It’s a 115 year-old patch planted to its own Garnacha genetics with 20% Samso and some white grapes, all ‘grown en costers’. The vineyard is dominated by blue mineral schist loaded with zinc, aluminium and granite, and contains a streak of ferrous clay too. It’s a small vineyard of 1.34 hectares, much of which remains unplanted since Priorat’s abandonment post-Civil War. Augabuetes is very steep, and ranges between 220 and 290 metres in altitude.

Wild, wild cherries and plums, massive balsamic complexity, violet, rose hip, blood range and cold dark tea, briars and an old cob tobacco pipe ... freshened by white wine-like acidity over very austere slate and citric acid. You can feel the wash of the cool sea breezes enjoyed by Aubaguetes – it’s extraordinarily lively, perfumed, lifted and glorious.