Mas d'en Gil
In 1998, the Rovira Carbonell family—a prominent Spanish wine family—bought an established, but neglected wine estate in Priorat, a small, dynamic wine region in southwest Catalonia famous for its bold, full-bodied reds made from Cariñena (Carignan) and Garnacha (Grenache) grapes. The family (parents and four daughters) updated the wine production facility, leaving other original buildings to retain their original charm, and are now noteworthy pioneers of Priorat winemaking. Marta Rovira Carbonell, the youngest daughter and a devoted advocate of biodynamics, transitioned the estate to organic familing methods. Today, Mas d'en Gil comprises of about 300 acres, planted into almost 45 different vineyard parcels, plus additional smaller crops like cereal, almonds, hazelnuts, olive oil, and—exceptionally—unplanted forest areas. The older vines, austere soil, hilly geography, and high altitude make for the slightly stressful conditions that are said to make more complex wines.For Mas d'en Gil's standout sour-sweet condiment Agredolç, Mas d’en Gil’s fine biodynamic red wine is acetified with a 40-year-old mother vinegar discovered in one of the vintage wine barrels found when the family bought the mas (farmhouse). It is then barrel-aged in a solera dating back to 1958 (in the solera system, vinegars of varying ages are meticulously blended in the barrels to maintain consistently excellent quality and complexity of flavor). A small amount of concentrated grape must is added for sweetness and balance. As with quality balsamics, "condiment" might be a better word for Agredolç than “vinegar."