According to documents dating back to 1385, the vineyards at LLopart were granted to Barnardus Leopardi, but over the centuries, grain and olive cultivation were added to the estate. By the late 17th century the land was switched to vineyards exclusively and by 1887 the first bottling of Cava occurred. Today, the family continues to uphold family traditions and produce artisanal Cava. The taste may be the same, but some changes in aesthetics are observable.
With an old stone watchtower looking over the winery and the old bodega and cellars perched at the highest point of the estate, guests enter into a futuristic glass and steel structure that is the main building for Llopart today. A large reception area where historical records and paraphernalia are on display in the front portion, the back portion functions as the tasting room with display cases of available products for sale.
After an introduction and explanation of the company logo – a map of the road leading up to the property from an era long past – the tour winds up the spiral staircase of La Heradad Can Llopart de Subirats tower. The walls are lined with portrait paintings of various ancestors and lit with chandeliers tastefully made up of green-glass Cava bottles. The exit at the top leads to a terrace, where guests may experience momentary blindness due to the Mediterranean sun, only to regain vision and think they are facing an extraordinary mirage. The spectacular view from the driveway is enhanced here with the additional uninterrupted view of the terraced vineyards backed by the distant Montserrat Mountain. Turning around to face the bodega leads to the realisation that the terrace is level with a small patch of vines that are growing on top of the cellar and bottling facility.
Llopart is unique in that the estate is divided into three plots mostly on terraced or sloped fields, which means the vines are weaker and produce less fruit compared to other vineyards in the region. Nonetheless, Llopart takes this disadvantage and uses it to its benefit by producing quality Cava that is distinct and rich in flavour.
Wander down from the vines to enter the concrete cellar and it’s like stepping into a dream world. Dark with aging Cava bottles stacked metres high, the occasional gleam or sparkle of light passing through the dense stacks of bottles gives the impression of being in a hyper-futuristic secret chamber out of a spy thriller. Entering into another section where the walls have been constructed out of stacks of aging bottles is a space littered with a dozen or so quirky stools shaped like Cava corks made out of cork. Have a rest and watch a short promotional film before moving on to the pinnacle of extravagant spectacle. In the corner of the long vast riddling room lies a caged area behind which sits a majestic round table with a wild chandelier made up of tentacles of light illuminating a bottle of Ex Vita Gran Reserva Brut.
The extravagant aesthetics of the modern building of Llopart suggest a new focus on publicity and impressing visitors, but behind this polished facade lies centuries old experience and strong family tradition that is reflected in the superb taste of the Cava.
- Ex Vite (96 pts)
- Leopardi (94 pts)
Registered conference delegates will have the opportunity to visit Llopart as part of the IWINETC Conference programme starting on 4th April at 14.15. Later at 20.00 there will be a Welcome Reception from the host and Premum Sponsors followed by a tapas evening with Cavas from Codorníu (DO Cava) and wines from Raimat (DO Costers del Segre) and Scala Dei (DOQ Priorat)