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Olivé Batllori
by
Kathy and Terry Sullivan

Olivé BatlloriSummary: Olivé Batllori is a winery featuring views of the town of Sant Sandurní d’Anoia, Subirat Castel and vineyards. The winery is adjacent to a masia built in the late 1600s.

Olivé Batllori offers a fantasy view with four decorative towers at the front of the building. Behind and adjacent to the winery is an old stone masia. Walking past the masia, there is a wondrous panorama of Sant Sadurní d’Anoia and the Castell de Subirats. The vineyards are located below the masia at the bottom of the bowl-shaped land. The friendly, younger generation is seeking to make a place in the cava and tourism industry. On our tour of Olivé Batllori we were shown the large stones above a doorway of the masia with the date 1699. This was the rural house known as ‘Can Figures’.

History

The younger generation includes Maria Font Olivé and Marçal Montserrat who with Maria’s uncle Lluis Font, as winemaker, are spearheading a new direction for the winery. They want to re-establish the winery and see a bright future as an agritourism site. The newest section of the winery with towers was built in a modernist architectural style in the 1940s. The facade and four towers with spires looks like a setting for a fairy tale. Today the winery is owned by Maria’s mother, Assumpció Olivé Batllori and uncle Lluis Font. Although the masia is in need of repair, Maria hopes to refurbish the masia.

Olivé BatlloriVineyards and Winery

The vineyards at Olivé Batllori occupy 20 hectares (49 acres) that include Macabeo, Xarel.lo, Parellada, Chardonnay and Merlot. These vineyards are located at 250 to 270 meters (820 to 886 feet) in elevation. The vineyards are in a protected area, surrounded by hills. Sixteen million years ago the land was covered by a lake. Now the vineyards provide a sea of green. The winery sells some of its grapes to other wineries, but also sources additional grapes needed for their cava and wine production. Harvested grapes are pressed at another facility.

Olivé BatlloriWe visited the old cellar where bottles are stored in rimas. Sections of the cellars are more recent. In one chamber the original rock intrudes into the cellar. There are claw marks on the rock where it was hewn. We wondered if the stone may have been too hard to penetrate further. Today the cellars have 130,000 bottles aging. Several riddling racks contain bottles at different angles. All bottles of cava are disgorged by hand.

Olivé Batllori produces 50,000 bottles and plans to increase production while maintaining quality. Maria noted they have room to age more bottles in the cellars. In the future they will add activities to the site that will attract tourists. Wine tourists will be able to learn the old process of producing cava with disgorgement by hand. A lighthearted competition can be arranged for a small tour group. Each adult will have a chance to disgorge, by hand, one cava bottle. The one that loses the least amount of cava from the bottle is the winner. At Olivé Batllori, cava is disgorged as needed, keeping the cava fresh for consumers’ purchase.

Olivé BatlloriWe followed a ramp leading from the parking area to the glass door of the tasting room. Next to the ramp three wrought iron tables and chairs are available for visitors to enjoy a glass of cava. There is a large inside area where guests can taste cavas. Throughout this area, vintage artifacts attract attention. Notice the machine that was used to wash bottles. In another area a leather sofa and chairs provide a relaxing space to enjoy cava. The tasting counter is at the opposite end of the room near the entrance. Another smaller room is set up for a private, more intimate cava tasting.

Olivé BatlloriOlivé Batllori Cavas

The Gran Brut Nature Reserva 2012 was a blend of 65% of Macabeo, Xarel.lo, Parellada, and 35% of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. The cava had very lively bubbles forming an active mousse. This light yellow cava offered green apple, citrus notes with a hint of freshly baked bread.

The Brut Cava was aged at least 18 months and had a light yellow color with multiple beads leading to mousse. This blend of Macabeo, Xarel.lo and Parellada offered an aroma of floral, mineral and pear. The taste also had hints of apple. This cava had a lively mouth feel and a finish of mineral and floral.

The 2011 Brut Nature Reserva was a blend of Macabeo, Xarel.lo and Parellada. The light yellow colored cava had a quickly moving column of bubbles forming a large mousse on the surface. Mineral and green apple were on the aroma, while the taste had mineral and green apple with a very lively mouthfeel. The finish was crisp and fruity.

When visiting the Penedés area, contact the winery for an appointment.

Olivé Batllori
Carrer de Sota Els Casots
08379 Subirats
(Barcelona), Spain

 

Article written June 2015



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