Last Friday we went to Sommos, a winery in Barbastro in the Somantano wine region. We are going to include a visit to this bodega on our Riglos & Alquezar holiday so needed to check it out – it’s a hard job but somebody has to do it
The Somontano wine area isn’t that well known outside of Spain but produces some excellent wines – particularly reds – at excellent prices. The first vineyards started there in the late 1800′s but it didn’t become a ‘denominacion’ until the 1980′s.
Sommos winery has been designed by architect Jesús Marino Pascual and is known as the ‘Guggenheim of the Somontano’.
Blanca welcomed us and showed us the vineyards (quick visit as it was raining hard!) and the winery where they produce the wines.
Bodega Sommos is owner of 355 hectares of vines
- for red wines they use Tempranillo, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Syrah, Grenache, Moristel, Parraleta and Pinot Noir varieties.
- for white wines they use Chardonnay and Gewurztraminer varieties.
They grew these varieties with densities between 4500 and 7000 plants per ha, most of them with buried drip irrigation system and all of them are grown in trellis.
In Sommos all the processes are completely automated – it’s an incredible system and the bodega shows an excellent video that explains how the wine is made and how the automation helps protect the grapes and produce better wines. They describe wine making as a balance between technology and an art form.
Grapes are harvested by mechanical harvesters with destemming system at night. The unloading is made by vibration avoiding the crushing of the grapes.
Then fermentation starts in casks (the alcoholic fermentation).
Casks are emptied by the force gravity into either concrete or oak casks for the next stage of the fermentation process (malolactic). The deepest point in the winery is actually 27 metres below the ground – this both helps them use gravity to move the wine between the various stages but also keeps the temperatures constant during the year.
Workers don’t to move the casks or barrels, there are robots with a GPS system that moves everything around.
They chose these casks from 200 different woods and treatments.
They don’t use natural cork, they prefer cork conglomerate to avoid oxygen entering the wine. The winery is able to bottle 6500 bottles per hour.
To finish the fabulous visit, we ate in their restaurant, with views over the vineyards. The food was fabulous!
Thank you Blanca and Sommos for a great day out. We look forward to showing our guests around this fantastic bodega!
If your passing by take a tour of the bodega – you can even take a trip round the vines on horseback. Read more details on www.bodegasommos.com