Jordi Domenech pursues passion for winemaking in Priorat
After working as an oenologist for several other wineries, Jordi Domenech - father, husband, and finally winery owner - is pursing a dream of creating his own quality wines in the highly-regarded region of Priorat, Spain. Now Jordi owns 12 hectares of vineyards on the typical licorella - the slate stone soil famous in Priorat. I visited Jordi's winery on a media trip and came away with a deep appreciation for his wines, and his spirit of entrepreneurship.
On this trip, we visited Jordi's vineyards, perched on a steep hillside surrounded by wildflowers, buzzing insects, almond trees- everything around it was alive. He pointed out with pride his Garnacha and Syrah vines, and we could see the fierce dedication that man has to making the project come to life.
We tasted through a number of his wines and I was impressed with the focus and quality of each. His 2012 Petit Clos Penant had garnered 91 points from Penin's Guide in 2013. Tasting this wine was like biting into black cherries at the peak of ripeness, when the dark sweet juice nearly bursts from the skin. The wine had dark ruby color, firm tannins, black pepper accent the cherry flavors and good acidity. A stunning wine.
The Clos Penat was produced from 80 percent of grapes from 50 year old Garnacha vines in addition to Syrah and a tiny bit of Carignan. This month is aged longer (14 months) in oak. I found this wine more tart, a bit more angular. It had rich blackberry flavor, spiciness, and it was a huge, mouth-filling wine. This wine had been awareded 87 points in Penin's Guide of 2012.
Jordi Domenech's determination is paying off. He is thoughtfully growing his winemaking business, supplemented by his own work and his family's local restaurant which offers delicious Catalan fare in Montsant.