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L'Ermita 2019

L'Ermita

2019
The Priorat legend
100
PARKER
98
PEÑÍN
98
SUCKLING
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£1,409.05

/ 0.75 L btl

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Spec sheet

TypeRed wine
Region
Grapes
Producer
AllergensContains sulfites
Alcohol contenti14.5%
Production2,000 - 3,000 bottles

The wine

Álvaro Palacios describes his exquisite and highly esteemed wine L’Ermita as a wine for intimacy, for which no words are needed, just emotion. L’Ermita caresses all our senses with a texture that defies description and a power shrouded in touching finesse; truly moving.

What does this wine taste like?

In spite of its high alcohol content and its area of provenance, year after year L’Ermita successfully comes through as a fresh wine. It proves accessible despite its complexity and is incredibly seductive, almost mesmerizingly so, from the very first sip.

On the nose, aromas of fruit (plums, blueberries, cherries…) are particularly noticeable, as well as mineral touches (gravel) and fine toasty and spicy hints. Enchanting floral scents (violets) adorn a palate that’s generous and substantial, dense and weighty, yet with tannins of great finesse which bestow a high degree of persistence and elegance. A citrusy, very balanced acidity takes care of the essential input of freshness and of launching the wine into what seems like an interminable finish.

L'Ermita is compact and intriguing, and displays copious measures of light and symmetry. It boasts increasing layers of aromas, completely rounded, fresh and supple at the core; it is, to put it simply, perfection in the form of wine.

Drinking and storing

It’s difficult to foretell the length of life of this grandiose wine, bearing in mind that production began in the nineties. Bottles of the first vintages opened at the end of 25 years continue to show a really incredible intensity of colour and powerfulness. In all truth, a great wine for cellaring.

We recommend decanting and serving in a Burgundy-style glass. Allowing plenty of time.

Serve between 15ºC and 17ºC

Food pairing

Game birds, duck, and grilled red meats, to mention several preferred accompaniments.

carnes-rojas
Red meat
faisa
Small game
brasa
Roast meats

Ratings and awards

202199-100 PK
202099 PK100 SK
2019100 PK98 PN98 SK
201899 PK97 PN98 SK
201798 PK97 PN98 SK
201697-100 PK
PK: ParkerPN: PeñínSK: Suckling

Wine critics reviewsReviews by Parker, Parker, and Parker

There is even more Cariñena in this warm vintage, and the varietal breakdown of the 2017 L'Ermita comes to a majority of Garnacha but with a notable 20% Cariñena and some 2% of white grapes. It fermented with indigenous yeasts in oak vats and matured in oak barrels of different sizes for 16 months. The grapes were picked on the 18th of October, which is extremely late considering that 2017 was their earliest harvest ever! It has a surprisingly high percentage of Cariñena, the highest ever for L'Ermita, yet the wine feels like the essence of a Mediterranean Garnacha—floral, expressive, open, insinuating, refined and elegant. It has great depth and refined tannins and feels light on its feet, yet it's full of inner power, intense and persistent. It's detailed, nuanced, clean, transparent, focused and pure. The flavors are very precise and clean and the aftertaste extremely long. A truly great L'Ermita, again, transcending the conditions of the vintage. They got 15.2 hectoliters per hectare. 2,900 bottles were filled in May 2019. This will be the first wine to carry the new Priorat classification Gran Viña Clasificada, the equivalent of a Grand Cru in Burgundy.

— Luis Gutiérrez (30/08/2019)Robert Parker Wine Advocate Vintage 2017 - 98 PARKER

L'Ermita carries the "gran vinya classificada," the top of the official vineyard classification in Priorat, and the 2019 L'Ermita comes from 1.45 hectares planted in 1939 with Garnacha, Cariñena and white grapes. The grapes for the 2019 vintage—73% Garnacha, 26% Cariñena and 1% white grapes (Garnacha Blanca, Macabeo and Pedro Ximenez)—were picked between October 11th and 14th. The wine is close to 15% alcohol but has a low pH (freshness) from fermenting with 30% whole bunches in oak vats with indigenous yeasts and maturing in French oak casks for 14 months. Contrary to what I saw in many 2019s, this is higher in Cariñena than ever, but the grapes were all co-fermented in two 1,000-liter oak vats, and there is perfect integration of the varieties. There was an incredible richness of aromas here, perfumed, intoxicating and showy, an extroverted vintage, with a deeper voice than the 2018. There is incredible precision and finesse here, subtleness and elegance. The wine is compact, seamless and with incredible balance. It's both powerful and elegant, and there is energy and light, symmetry and clout. There are layers and layers here, with a spherical core, fresh and agile, all the things a great wine should have. It has an endless finish. Amazing! 2,070 bottles were filled in May 2021.

— Luis Gutiérrez (30/07/2021)Robert Parker Wine Advocate Vintage 2019 - 100 PARKER

2020 was a low-yielding year because of mildew, so there are only 1,441 bottles of the 2020 L'Ermita, which reflects the variability in the old Garnacha vines. It was produced with a blend of 92% Garnacha, 7% Cariñena and 1% Garnacha Blanca, Macabeo and PX. The difference between this and the 2020 Les Aubaguetes is the finesse and subtleness of L'Ermita and the class and quality of the tannins. L'Ermita carries the category of Gran Vinya Classificada, the top of the official vineyard classification in Priorat.

— Luis Gutiérrez (30/09/2022)Robert Parker Wine Advocate Vintage 2020 - 99 PARKER

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Winemaking

In the production of L’Ermita, the grapes are picked in as many as three phases, in order to ensure that each berry has attained perfect ripeness. Once in the winery, the grapes are selected again and bunches are destemmed by hand. Afterwards, the must ferments in large wooden vats with frequent stirrings, ensuring the perfect integration of all its aromas and a fantastic colour is extracted. At the end of some 45-50 days with the skins, these are then pressed and malolactic fermentation commences in barrel. The wine rests for 14-18 months in new oak and is bottled without filtration, and clarified with egg white. The wine usually has an alcohol content of 15%, but a low pH which bestows freshness, and should be fermented with about 30% of whole bunches. Depending the year, between 500 and 3,000 bottles are produced.

Vinification materialWood
Ageing periodBetween 14 and 18 months
Barrel ageNew
Type of woodFrench oak
Clarification and filtrationClarified with fresh egg whites / Unfiltered

Vineyards

Finca L'Ermita

L’Ermita is the name of the wine and of the steep vineyard which gives rise to the grapes used for its production, in the town of Gratallops. This magical plot boasts the certification Gran Vinya Classificada (equivalent to a grand cru), the highest distinction that wines in the Priorat QDO can aspire to attaining.

Its vines were planted between 1910 and 1940 on llicorella (slate) soils which are worked by using a mule, at an altitude of 400-520 metres. This unique spot faces mainly northwards and is planted with Garnacha, Cariñena and some white varieties, grown in accordance with biodynamic principles.

Vine ageBetween 85 and 105 years
SoilLlicorella
ClimateMediterranean
YieldsLow yields
OrientationNortheast
Surface area4.50 hectares
Altitude500.00 meters

The winery

Álvaro Palacios

Álvaro Palacios

Álvaro Palacios came to the Priorat in 1989, to the town of Gratallops to be precise, following the lead of a group of local producers fully intending to pass on through their wines all the character of this land, full of its own brightness, with the shining Mediterranean sun, the gleaming slate in rocky crags, and brightly-coloured fennel in the olive groves. This is mystic, spiritual country tracing back its past to the Carthusian monks, who worked at cultivating vines...

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