- Tasting Notes & Technical Details
Vegetarian, Vegan, Practising Biodynamic, Certified Organic
Raventós i Blanc is owned by one of Spain’s historic winemaking families with a viticultural tradition dating back to 1497. Josep Raventós Fatjó produced Spain’s first traditional method sparkling wine in 1872 from estate-grown Xarel-lo and his descendant, Josep Maria Raventós i Blanc, became a key figure in Spanish wine.
Following the civil war and years of dictatorship, Josep Maria worked tirelessly to grow the family-owned Codorníu and promote the region’s sparkling wines. He eventually helped establish Cava as a Denominación de Origen. In 1986, the energetic Josep Maria sold his share of Codorníu to make high-quality wines from the family’s original vineyards around Sant Sadurní d’Anoia.
Today, Raventós i Blanc is run by Pepe Raventós, who previously worked with Hubert Lamy in Burgundy, Gaston Chiquet in Champagne and Didier Dagueneau in Pouilly-Fumé, and has inherited his grandfather’s spirit and vision. Believing Raventós i Blanc should “convey our viticultural traditions, the strength of our land and the characteristics of our soils”, Pepe withdrew from the Cava DO in 2012, to focus on their distinctive Conca del Riu Anoia region in Alt Penedès.
Raventós i Blanc’s 50 hectares of vines are nestled among picturesque woodland and divided into 44 plots, according to soil and microclimate, within seven larger areas: Clos del Serra, La Vinya Més Alta, Costers del Serral-Vinya dels Fòssils, Les Barberes-Oliveres, El Llac, La Plana and Travesseres-Gran. The climate is Mediterranean. The estate, atop limestone soils replete with marine fossils, is protected by three mountain ranges: Sierra Litoral to the east, Montserrat to the north and Sierra d‘en Compte to the west.
Pepe believes in polyculture and biodiversity, and the family’s land is home to many crops and animals. Biodynamic principles are employed alongside traditional Catalan farming practices, such as horse ploughing. “I believe that to express origin, you really need to bring a lot of life into your farm,” says Pepe.
Raventós i Blanc’s wines are vintage dated and made from 100% indigenous, estate-grown varieties. The wines undergo a minimum of 18 months ageing on lees in stainless steel tanks. Their Blanc de Blancs is a traditional blend of Macabeo, Xarel-lo, Parellada and Malvasia de Sitges. It is a gentle, citrus and mineral-inflected wine with soft Mediterranean herbs, superb freshness and a persistent finish. De Nit blends local white grapes with Monastrell, resulting in a lovely pale sparkling rosé. Both wines are extra brut and produced from younger vines. ‘De la Finca’ is limited production and produced from the Vinya dels Fòssils site. This zero-dosage wine benefits from 30 months on lees and is complex and saline with delicate lemon and fennel accents. Textures de Pedra is a blanc de noirs from Vinya Més Alta, the estate’s highest plot. It blends pale-skinned Xarel-lo-Vermell with Sumoll and Bastard Negre and spends 48 months on lees. With zero dosage, its intense, layered palate of fig, walnut and acacia honey shines through.
The 1.92 hectare Clos del Serral, boasts the estate’s oldest Xarel-lo vines, which are co-planted with Bastard Negre and planted on fossil-rich Mycenaean soils, producing an exceptional single-site wine. The wines are aged 100 months prior to disgorgement and display immense energy, with aromas of orange peel and a trademark saline edge. The 2009 attained an impressive 99 points in Decanter, described by Pedro Ballesteros Torres MW as a “masterwork’’, and the 2010 vintage looks to be equally promising.
Raventós i Blanc’s 50 hectares of vines are located in the Conca del Riu Anoia in Alt Penedès. Biodynamic principles are adhered to, using manure from the farm's animals as the base for the compost. The climate here is Mediterranean with mild winters and warm, dry summers. The estate is surrounded by three mountain ranges: Sierra Litoral in the east, which acts as a rain shadow from the wetter coastal areas, Montserrat in the north and Sierra d'en Compte in the west, both providing wind breaks and cooling temperatures from the Pyrenees. The vineyards are divided into 44 plots, depending on the different soils and microclimates. The grapes for De la Finca come from old vines in the Vinya dels Fòssils plot. This vineyard sits at 170-197 metres above sea level, where grey clay top soils sit above sandy subsoils containing small fragments of marine fossils.
The 2019 vintage was a quiet vintage for the vine. A wet autumn, fresh spring and a dry, warm summer, resulted in a long and complete vegetative cycle with no pressure from fungal disease. The grapes were harvested later than expected, with the Parellada not being harvested until the 21st of September. A delicious, extraordinarily healthy vintage.
The grapes were harvested by hand using trailers of up to 2.5 Kilos. All varieties were pressed separately through a pneumatic press at low pressure. The juice was fermented in stainless steel tanks at 17 to 21ºC using native wild yeast, which lasted around 9-15 days. The wine was aged in racks, on its lees for 30 months before bottling.
On the nose this wine is fruity with hints of citrus, toast and pastry. On the palate, it is expressive, elegant and fresh, with a distinctive mineral note and a long, impressive finish.