‘We learn from time… we build on history’ is the maxim from the almost century old and prestigious sparkling wine producer, Recaredo.

Josep Mata Capellades, a professional winemaker, created the Penedès-based Recaredo in 1924. He was determined to age his wines, and therefore he began building the cellar right underneath his home. Later, he named his little winery Recaredo after his father Recaredo Mata Figueres.

Josep Mata is recognised as a pioneer in the production of dry and long-aged sparkling wines from a specific terroir. Since 2010, Ton Mata, his grandson, manages the estate, while still focusing on the production of high quality and unique terroir-driven, brut nature sparkling wines, defined by elegance and subtlety.

The 65-hectare mosaic of vineyards belonging to the Mata family is located 50 kilometres west of Barcelona, in the Bittles Valley Highlands of the Alt Penedès county, where the mainly calcareous terrain is characterised by disjointed landscapes, dominated by the imposing presence of the mountain of Montserrat. As a result of the Mediterranean, Recaredo’s vineyards experience mild winters and hot dry summers. 

The vineyards are predominantly planted with Xarel.lo, the classic white grape of the area, as well as Macabeu, Parellada, Monastrell, and Garnatxa, all indigenous varieties of the Mediterranean zone. Artisans of the land and pioneers in biodynamic farming, everyone at Recaredo listens to nature to find answers. They are extremely sensitive to the balance of the ecosystem, and they ensure that biodiversity is fostered 

in their vineyards, which are farmed eschewing any chemical fertilisers, herbicides, or fungicides. Infusions, decoctions, and maceration are prepared with wild herbs picked in the vineyards and dried at the estate. These natural treatments are provided to the vines so as to strengthen their natural defences, and therefore contributing to healthy grapes.   

The often demanding sites are tended manually with the substantial help of draught horses. They plough each plot, while preserving the soils and the deeply rooted vines, including a few planted in the 1950s. In the winter, sheep herds meander amidst the vines, ensuring that the vineyards are well-kept, while also providing natural fertiliser. 

The entirety of the grapes are hand picked and the vinification, followed by the long ageing, is carried out in Recaredo’s cellars. The secondary fermentation and the bottle ageing are done exclusively with natural cork stoppers. All Recaredo’s wines spend a minimum of 30 months to more than 15 years in the darkness of their cellars, making the winery an undisputed standard-bearer for rigour and excellence. Disgorgement (the uncorking process) without freezing is still done by true artisans, who expel the lees manually. This traditional technique underscores their commitment to long-aged wines. All the family’s sparkling wines are Brut Nature, therefore with no dosage or addition of sugar, ensuring the most honest expression of both terroir and vintage.

In January 2019, Recaredo, together with eight more family wineries specialised in quality sparkling wines, left the Cava DO and created their own European Collective Brand known as Corpinnat.

Recaredo’s wines become deep and luminous, subtle and rich in nuances. They retain their freshness even after long ageing, and minerality. They are complex with a persistent finish and essentially ideal for pairing with fine foods.

Recaredo also produces the still wines of Celler Credo, observing the same ethics as for the production of their sparkling wines.

Profile © Françoise and Seán Gilley

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