I have spent every summer my whole life on the coast north of Barcelona. The place is my second home and we often get pretty domesticated when we are there, in the meaning that we have to grab ourselves by the neck to get out and explore something new or do a touristic thing. We tend to hang out on the same beach every year (because we have got to know the guy who rents us our paddle boards), eat at the same local places (because it’s like coming home), shop in the same mall (because it’s so effective that we know exactly where Massimo Dutti, Adolfo Dominguez and Intimissimi are located) and spend time with family and friends.
One afternoon in July this year, sitting at my grandparents balcony overlooking the Mediterranean we talked about wine. About the many wineries in Catalunya and Spain. It hit us that we had actually never been at a real vineyard (well okay, we had been to a tiny one in Denmark, but as the weather is not for growing grapes in Denmark, the wine was pretty awful…). So we decided that it was about time to go. As we drank Torres wine at our wedding, we decided that the Torres vineyards outside of Barcelona would be the ones to visit.
So here’s a day at the Torres Vineyards:
Nice to know before going
+ It is a 50 minutes car ride from Barcelona in Vilafranca del Penedés
+ You have to book tickets in advance by phone or e-mail
+ It is extremely hot in summer, so do wear sun protection, and light clothes (sun hats and water will be provided)
At Torres they offer various tours in both Spanish and English. We chose the walking tour through the vineyards.
The visit started in the main building with a 15 minutes movie about the Torres family, the history, the many vineyards and their philosophy of making wine.
Then it was time for a 40 minutes walk through the estate. First stop was their “school plantation” where they educate their employees. Here they grow all their different varieties of grapes for teaching purposes. Our guide gave a thorough introduction to the most popular ones.
Then followed a walk through the vineyards with breathtaking views to the surrounding area.
We reached the production factory where the grapes are turned into delicious wine…
…and got down to the cellars where the wine is stored. As it is impossible not to waste some wine when bottling the barrels, they have painted the middle part of the barrels red. That way you don’t see the lines of splashed wine. Smart and pretty!
Then it was time for a wine tasting. As the current General Manager’s wife is German, he has started to grow grapes to make Riesling wine. We knew Riesling from Germany and Austria, but had no idea that it was also made in Spain. It was our absolute favorite.
A little electric train brought us back to the main building, where we got to taste more wine and do some shopping in their beautiful shop.
The Torres family is very conscious about the environment. The factory on this estate is designed to blend in with the beautiful natural surroundings. Much of their electricity is generated through solar panels, which the little touristic train was powered by.
The visit was around two hours in total and very recommendable for both wine enthusiasts and wine amateurs like ourselves. After the tour there is free entrance to their museum with vintage production tools and pictures of the different Torres estates.
If you fancy a lunch after the visit, there is an antique tavern just across the street, where they serve a daily menu (where many of the employees at Torres have lunch every day).
For more information visit the website here