DO Montsant


The DO Montsant (the name guaranteeing place of origin) embraces the wines of the villages of the ancient county of Prades and the baronies of Cabacés, Entença and Escornalbou. The first written references to the existence of vineyards in the area are found in the documents ceding land, such as that of Ulldemolins in 1166, or in letters relating to the right to establish a village, as for example in the case of Cabacés, granted in 1185 by the Bishop of Tortosa. For years, wine making was dominated by the co-operatives. The co-operative movement emerged in the 20th century, a communal effort arising partially in response to the great catastrophe caused by phylloxera, an unstoppable pest that destroyed all the vines. The revival of the wine industry brought with it the construction of new buildings designed by influential architects like Cèsar Martinell. His work includes the modernist wine cellars in Falset and in Cornudella de Monsant, two examples displaying impressive brickwork. Today, however, alongside the growing prestige of the co-operatives, there are also many private wine cellars of high quality.

The area that today comprises the DO Monsant was, until 2001, included within the DO Tarragona. This had been created in 1947 with Falset named only as a sub-zone within the denomination. However, the individuality of the wines of the area, and the fact that production took place within a well-defined territory, became the primary reason for reclaiming a denomination which differentiated the wines of this area from the remainder of the extensive DO Tarragona.



Area of production: The villages of the Priorat: La Bisbal de Falset, Cabacés, Capçanes, Cornudella de Montsant, la Figuera, els Guiamets, Marçà, part of the municipal districts of el Molar and of Falset, Margalef de Montsant, el Masroig, Pradell de la Teixeta, la Torre de Fontaubella and Ulldemolins, and Darmós and La Serra d'Almos in the region of Ribera d’Ebre.

Cultivated area: Approximately 1,900 hectares.

Varieties of red wine: Red grenache and carignan are grown throughout the region, as the predominant varieties and the ones best suited to the terroir. We can also find tempranillo, cabernet sauvignon, syrah, merlot, garnatxa peluda (“hairy grenache”), monastrell (“mourvèdre”) and picapoll (“red picpoul”).

Varieties of white wine: White granache and macabeu above all, and to a lesser extent, pansal (“xarel·lo”), moscatell de gra petit (“white muscat à petits grains”), chardonnay, picapoll blanc (“white picpoul”), parellada and garnatxa roja (“grenache gris”).

Altitude: From 100-700 metres.

Types of soil: Limestone, clay, limestone-clay, granite based sand, panal and llicorella (slate).

Distinctive features: The significant variations of terrain within the denomination produce a wide range of intensely coloured wines, elegant in flavour with hints of fruit and/or flowers, full bodied and with a persistent aftertaste.


Within the territories of the DO Montsant, wine is synonymous with a life of hard work, tenacity and hope. The importance of cooperation and the growth in the number of wineries in recent years is clear proof of this. Drawing on the experience of older people, a group of growers and young winemakers have brought this small Designation of Origin to the attention of the world of wine. In a short time, the wines of the DO Montsant have gained the respect and admiration of the finest experts all around the world for their quality and strong personality.

The DO Montsant has surprised everyone. The wines are dynamic; a mixture of accumulated wisdom and experience, and the energy and enthusiasm brought by the new generation of agriculturalists and winemakers. These wines also represent commitment, risk taking, cooperation and confidence in achievement. For example, almost all the population of a village took out a mortgage for the development of a cooperative. Growers have joined forces to impress buyers and to open markets in the United States, Germany, Holland, Israel...

A good number of the wineries and cooperatives that have played an important part in this revolution are now open to the public. They are keen to share their excellent wines and, above all, would like you to take part in their adventure and share their hopes for the future.