Catalonia, good wine country

Conca de Barberà
Costers del Segre
Pla del Bages
Terra Alta


Designation of Origin

Regular volume produced ranges from 70,000 to 75,000 hectolitres, although this may vary depending on the climate conditions; for instance, the 1998 harvest was a 20% less due to a great frost. Altogether it comprises 2,705 hectares of vineyards.


Red vines grown in L’Empordà are Garnacha and Mazuela; and white vines are Macabeo, Xarel·lo and white Garnacha, well known in the area as Lladoner.


The greatest popularity in this region, however, is for rosés. They have a strong character and a delicate aroma; with a fresh and moderate alcohol content (like the famous “vi novell”). Also sweet generous wines and some excellent red wines are produced in the area, to be consumed young, fruity and light.




The Regulatory Board for this designation, approved in 1975, covers the following grape varieties: Red: Cariñena (majority), Red Garnacha, Ull de Llebre (also known as Tempranillo), Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot. White: White Garnacha, Grey Garnacha, Macabeo Xarel·lo and Cardonnay.


On the other hand, what the area is renowned for is cava production; but, as cava has its own designation, they stay out of the Empordà Regulatory Board’s scope.




Geographical situation


Near the French border, on the North-East corner of the Peninsula, we find the Empordà-Costa Brava Designation of Origin, with almost 2,500 hectares of vineyard.

Due to its closeness to the Mediterranean Sea and the Pyrenees, climate is full of sharp contrasts. Lots of sunshine, a remarkable rainfall and frequent violent winds (tramuntana) are the remarcable features of its weather.






To get rated as “Crianza”, red wine needs to remain 12 months in barrel and complete ageing in bottle.


Reserva wines need 18 months in barrel and Gran Reserva wines need 24 months in oak barrel.


An original initiative that, unfortunately, did not succeed, took place in the mid 80s when, fighting against wines sold by the litre —so typical in the area; a young and fresh red wine, fruity and naïve, was produced; it got known as Vi Novell de l’Empordà, similar to its neighbour Beaujolais Nouveau.


For wines undergoing ageing, ageing will last at least a year for whites and rosés, and two years for reds, at least one of them in oak container.


Vintage rating 

Excelent: 1998 | 2005 | 2007
Very good: 1995 | 1996 | 1999 | 2000 | 2001 | 2003 | 2004 | 2005 | 2008 | 2009 | 2010 | 2011
Good: 2002
Regular: 1997


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Beyond wine: DO Conca de Barberà  Wine in Moderation