Perpetual, DOQ Priorat
The Wine Advocate
The polished and sleek 2016 Petpetual has more of the slate character from the Priorat soil, with notes of graphite, berries and Mediterranean herbs. It's an old-vine blend of 80% Cariñena and 20% Garnacha that fermented in stainless steel vat with indigenous yeasts and an élevage of 18 months in new French oak barrels. It doesn't feel like there's a lot of new oak here, which is good in my book. The palate is medium to full-bodied with abundant, slightly dusty tannins, some rusticity and a dry, serious finish. It was bottled June 2018.
Old-vine Cariñena (95%) and Garnacha (5%) is sourced from plots across Priorat, with the vines all aged between 80 and 100 years. The result is a dramatic, dense and layered wine that still retains an engaging freshness and benefits from thoughtful use of oak: 70% of the blend is aged for 18 months in new French oak barrels and 30% in foudres. Notes of bilberry, mulberry and red currants sit alongside dried fruit and savoury notes of spice and leather. There's some fruit pastille juiciness and mouthcoating tannins. More to come with time in bottle.