Costers del Priorat Rocafosca 2020

Costers del Priorat Pissarres 2020

The steep slate-covered slopes of Priorat are one of the greatest, most underrated terroirs in the wine world. Building on the foundation that the land provides, Rocafosca represents a significant step on the path towards communicating the best attributes of the Priorat personality: balance and elegance. 

Jose Mas Barberá and his Costers del Priorat are a leading voice in the evolution of the wines of Priorat, producing distinctive wines rooted in the terroir of the Catalan countryside. The wines of Costers del Priorat emphasize nuance over power, a philosophical departure from the strong, tannic wines that once defined the region. As Jose Mas is working towards his Masters of Wine diploma, he finds inspiration for his Priorats in the nebbiolo wines of Italy’s Piemonte region (also underrated until recently), as he has learned from the best in that region.

Jose’s work in very privileged old vineyards in nine out of the twelve villages of Priorat allows him to focus on the different terroirs represented therein. Jose achieves elegance by employing only organic farming methods, allowing the wines to guide their evolution without ever forcing their trajectory, and utilizing a gentle élevage tailored to each vineyard, which includes old Garbellotto Slavonian oak foudres, large Stockinger foudres, and clay amphorae.

If one considers Costers del Priorat’s Pissarres bottling from their estate-vineyards as an expression of the totality that Priorat can give each vintage, then Rocafosca is a super-selection, or premier cru, of the very best selection of the vintage from four villages. Once the grapes destined for the estate Pissarres Priorat are selected, Jose carries out a second, even stricter selection of old-vine carignan and grenache for Rocafosca. 

One of the primary signatures of Costers del Priorat is their wealth of old vines. Vineyards for Rocafosca include: Mas Alsera (Torroja del Priorat), Aubagues, Bancalets and Sant Martí (Bellmunt del Priorat), Planets (La Vilella Baixa), and Colls de Porrera (Masos de Falset). All of the vineyards were planted from 1939 to 1970 in the traditional goblet trellising. 

The resulting wine is incredibly aromatic and deeply-satisfying, a symphony of flavor born of Priorat’s diverse orientations and microclimates. The glass is filled with freshness, nature, and all the mineral and botanical allure of the Priorat hillsides. Rocafosca is truly a masterclass in the transmission of terroir into the glass.

  • Sites: Mas Alsera (Torroja del Priorat), Aubagues, Bancalets and Sant Martí (Bellmunt del Priorat), Planets (La Vilella Baixa), and Colls de Porrera (Masos de Falset)

  • Elevation: 350m to 500m (northern and north-eastern orientation)

  • Grapes: 50% carignan / 50% grenache noir

  • Vine Age: Vines planted from 1939 to 1970

  • Soil: Devonian slate and sandy slate

  • Harvest: Hand-harvested, hand-selected in the vineyard

  • Vinification: Stainless steel tanks and cement vats

  • Alcoholic Fermentation: Each variety is fermented separately. Spontaneous fermentation with indigenous vineyard yeasts in with a small percentage of whole cluster with stem inclusion

  • Malolactic Fermentation: Spontaneous in oak foudres and clay amphorae

  • Aging: 12 months in old Garbellotto Slavonian oak foudres and clay amphorae

  • Farming: Practicing Organic

  • Vegan: Yes

  • Suggested Retail: $53.00 (750mL)