• MySomm Wine Expert

Wine Producer of the month... Scala Dei

Scala Dei are not just a wine producer from the Priorat region in Spain. They are THE wine producer of the Priorat.


The whole D.O.C Priorat was built around one wine, Scala Dei Cartoixa which is still produced today. Founded in the 12th Century by Cartesian monks who were trying to settle around Montsant (the Holy Mountain), local shepherds told them that at night they could see the Angels climbing God’s stairs to meet him (Scala Dei – Ladder of God). So they settled and started making wine and the name was born.


In the late 19th century the first wine referencing Priorat was produced by them and called “Priorato de Scala Dei”, it was sent to Paris and received gold.


Fast forward some years and the DO is created for one wine only, Scala Dei Cartoixa. It is for this reason that every single bottle of wine produced in the DOC Priorat has the logo of Scala Dei on the bottle, whether it be from Franck Massard or Alvaro Palacios. Scala Dei truly are the singular founder of the region.


When winemaker Ricard Rofes joined Scala Dei he set about tasting as many back vintages he could to understand the history of the wine style.


Upon tasting a complete vertical set from 1974 to the present day he found that those produced before the arrival of modern technology were more balanced, had aged more gracefully and were generally better wines.


In order to replicate this he did away with all the technology in the winery, bringing back concrete vats and removing the shiny stainless steel. Modern 225L barricas were out and the larger 600L were back in. To this day he insists that the only tech he uses is temperature control when absolutely necessary! True minimal intervention and absolute respect to the heritage of these magnificent wines!


Buy the Scala Dei Wines here...

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