This is the wine making region in the far northeast of Catalonia Spain, in the province of Girona. The Pyrenees Mountains and France border it on the North side, and the Mediterranean Sea to the East. Empordà lies in the legendary Costa Brava area. Famous for its beautiful coastline and beaches as well as Salvador Dali. With the improvement of quality lately, the wines will be just as famous with a little time.
The North wind known as Tramontana plays a big roll here keeping acidity high. This wind also ensures the vines stay dry and mildew-free. This is key to making wines with a hands-off approach. Allowing winemakers to make more natural wines that don’t go bad or grow unwanted funk.
There is a long tradition of wine production in Empordà spanning many empires and peoples. The Phoenicians started making wine here over 2,500 years ago, followed up by the Greeks and Romans of course. Benedictine Monks were also here making wine starting at least 900 years ago.
The soils here vary depending on where the vines are planted. It is rocky, sandy, and dry with good drainage composed of a fair amount of Limestone and Granite.
There are two main areas for wine in the Empordà D.O. Alt Emporda is further north and stretches into the foothills of the Pyrenees. Baix Empordà is further south, with vines grown on the slopes of the Montgrí and Gabarres Massifs.
Common Grape Varietals
-Ull de Llebre (Tempranillo)
There’s a ton more varietals grown in the area, but these listed make up the majority. Red wines make of most of the production at about 60%, with the remainder mainly White, Rosé, and some sparkling Cava. You’ll find a touch of sweet wine produced here as well.
Empordà is just over an hour north of Barcelona, and well worth a look at. The wines from this area are a great value, and getting better every vintage!