Spain: June 12-19, 2023 and Mallorca Extension: June 19-22, 2023
Join Chef Teresa Montaño on a very personal journey to some of her favorite places in Spain as together you taste your way through Catalunya and the wine region of Priorat, well known for its Garnacha (Grenache) wines. For those who want to extend this extraordinary trip, you can continue to Mallorca, a hidden gem of beach coves, its own food culture and locally-grown wine.
If you’ve been to Otoño, you know it’s Chef Teresa’s love letter to paella and tapas. During your trip, you’ll be treated to both, and get an understanding as to why these native foods of Spain were such an inspiration to her. You’ll taste wines at some of her hand-picked wineries that are hidden gems to most travelers. You’ll also visit some of Chef Teresa’s favorite haunts, get to cook with local chefs and have ample time for you to discover your own inspirations.
Spain Highlights: Barcelona – Priorat Wine Region – Tarragona – Valencia
- Tasting many of Chef Teresa’s favorite wineries, including Pares Balta, Clos Mogador, Coco i Fito and Clos de l’Obac
- Cava (sparkling wine) experience
- Paella making in Valencia
- Cocktail and Sangria making classes
- Vermouth tasting and education
- 3 nights stay in a former monastery, now a winery set in the vineyards
- Domestic flight from Valencia to Palma
- Visits to the most prized Mallorcan wineries, paired with local foods and olive oils
- Daily English-speaking driver at your disposal for free time when not visiting wineries on your agenda
What is included in the price:
- Hotels with daily breakfast and taxes
- All activities and tastings
- Meals as indicated
- Driver, local guides and tour manager throughout
- Welcome folder including your final itinerary, restaurant recommendations, shopping lists and information about the places and cities you will visit.
What is not included in the price:
- Meals not specified
- International airfare
- Travel Insurance
- Items of personal nature.
- Gratuities for drivers and guides
Arrival day - Barcelona
After arriving in Barcelona, you’ll be transferred to your hotel with an English speaking driver/guide. Later you’ll be taken on a panoramic tour of the city’s architectural highlights followed by a tapas tour/welcome dinner with wine.
Stay at Hotel El Palace Barcelona or similar, including breakfast and all taxes.
Excursion to the North
This morning, you’ll be taken for an Extra Virgin Olive Oil experience at the Masía Can Viver farmhouse. Located in the middle of nature, but close to Barcelona, the house has been in the Viver family since the XII century. Generation after generation has lived off its land and continue to do so today, while producing and selling exceptional Premium Olive Oil, recognized internationally. Here, you’ll learn how to truly taste the nuances of various olive oils, and also be treated to homemade tapas.
After leaving, you’ll enjoy a private picnic lunch and wine pairing in the vineyards of Bodegas Llopart, which is in the Penedès region. Known as the home of Cava production, you’ll learn what differentiates Cava from Cava Corpinnat, and get to taste the difference.
This evening, you’ll return to Barcelona, with dinner and evening on your own.
Barcelona to Priorat Wine Region
After breakfast, you’ll leave for Priorat, which, along with the Rioja, is the only region in Spain that produces the highest quality DOC wines. This is where Garnacha is king!
Along the way, you visit an ecological (organic) Cava winery. Then, you’ll arrive at Parés Balta winery in Penedès, which is one of the winery visits specifically chosen by Chef Teresa. What makes this winery especially interesting is not only the use of unique methods to produce their wines and Cava, but that the winemakers are women, which is very unusual in Spain. (Hint: the unusual methods involve sheep and bees!).
The next stop is the historic village of Siurana, a legendary town where knights fought for its castle overlooking the reservoir. You’ll stop for lunch with wine at an authentic local restaurant before heading to another of Chef Teresa’s chosen wineries, Clos Mogador. This multi-generational Priorat winery was founded by René Barbier, a Spaniard who is a descendant of a line of French winemakers dating back to the 1200s. You’ll get to tour and taste several of their award-winning wines.
You’ll begin a 3-night stay at Hotel Terra Dominicata that evening. This is a gorgeous property that was a 12th Century monastery and is now a luxury hotel/spa with its own winery and vineyard. Dinner tonight is on your own at the hotel’s sumptuous restaurant, and a reservation will be made for you if you wish.
Your day begins with a private visit with the owner of Clos de l’Obac. This is an unusual winery that uses a very specific blending process to make its Priorat wines. Each year, they blend the same varieties and percentages of grapes in one of four specific formulas (coupages) selected for each wine. The reason is to produce wines that reflect the climate and terroir, not the subjectivity of the winemaker. You’ll have a chance to taste and see how this compares with wines made in more traditional ways.
Following your visit, you’ll enjoy a wine-paired lunch at a local restaurant. You’ll then be taken back to the hotel for a tour of their winery as well as a lesson on how to make authentic Spanish Sangria.
The evening will be on your own, for dinner or perhaps to enjoy the spa.
Today you’ll visit the wonderful Coca i Fitó winery, whose wine is also featured on the wine menu at Chef Teresa’s Otoño restaurant in Los Angeles. Brothers Toni, the winemaker, and Miquel, the chef, have created a winery that produces wines specifically meant to be paired with food. In addition to their continual diversification of wine varietals, they also produce olive oil and amazing vermouth (vermut in Spanish).
Depending upon the group’s preference, you’ll either head to the charming village of Tarragona or the beach town of Sitges. From there, you’ll be taken to the port for a seafood lunch overlooking the boats.
Back at the hotel, you’ll get to learn more about vermouth, and how it’s not just an ingredient for a martini. The day will conclude with a tasting dinner at your hotel, paired with regional wines.
Tarragona to Valencia
Today’s drive will be your longest, at about 3 ½ hours, so you’ll stop in Pensicola or nearby for some coffee and a stretch. Once you arrive in Valencia, you’ll be treated to lunch at a local restaurant, complete with wines.
Before your afternoon activity, you’ll check into your hotel, the Hospes Palau de la Mar. Located in the center of Valencia and walkable to everything, this hotel is the combination of two 19th-century palaces that have been designed with modern touches that blend beautifully with their historic charm.
After check-in, you’ll be taken on a walking tour of Valencia’s Old Quarter and make a stop to taste a local treat, horchata, a soft drink served with forchons, a kind of breadstick. You’ll also get to see the City of Arts & Sciences. The day will end with a cocktail-making session where you’ll learn how to make Agua de Valencia.
The rest of the evening, and dinner, is on your own.
You’ll have some free time this morning as you’ll be leaving later to go to Albufera, a freshwater lagoon which is the rice growing area. No visit to Valencia, especially when visiting with Chef Teresa, would be complete without paella, so today you’re going to learn how to prepare it. Of course, you’ll eat your creation for lunch, and then you’ll be taken on a brief boat ride around the Albufera to learn about the local traditions. Later you’ll return to your hotel in the city center, before returning to the center of Valencia.
Tonight is your last night in Spain, and so you will get to celebrate with farewell drinks and a tapas dinner on the beach.
Adios to Spain
After breakfast at the hotel, check out and board your private transfer to the airport or train station. For those continuing to Mallorca, you’ll be taken to the airport for your flight to Palma. Note: you are only allowed to check 1 piece of luggage for this portion of the trip.
Mon, Jun 19, 2023
Day 1 - Hola to Mallorca!
An English-speaking driver will pick up the group continuing to Mallorca at the Palma airport. This driver will be at your disposal for 8 hours.
The first stop in Mallorca is at Bodegas Ángel, where a Premium wine tasting will be served as well as paella and a selection of Mallorcan delicatessen foods. The bodega was built in the style of the traditional stone-cladded Mallorcan buildings, with large windows to show the beautiful views of the vineyard. The vineyard and winery are surrounded by the natural beauty of Mallorca’s “Sierra Norte” mountain range. Bodegas Angel creates wines with its own identity and character using the indigenous grape varieties of the region, known as Prensal Blanc and Manto Negro.
Next, you will go to the Binissalem wine region to visit Vins Nadalis, which is one of the first and most important Casas del Vino in the region. Founded by Miquel Nadal Fiol in 1932, this is another winery that has been carried on by future generations. Today Rafael Nadal and Esperanza, the winery's oenologist, are the fourth generation of the Nadal family producing their local wines. You’ll get to taste some of their favorite wines and enjoy local foods as well.
After all of this drinking and eating, you’ll undoubtedly be happy to check into your home for the next 3 nights, the Hotel Es Princep. This small luxury hotel is located in the Old Town of Mallorca facing the ocean and boasts several excellent places to eat, a rooftop bar and a spa. It is a member of Leading Hotels of the World.
Tue, Jun 20, 2023
Day 2 - Mallorca
Your driver will pick you up at the hotel after breakfast and will be at your disposal for 8 hours.
First, you will visit Bodegas Ribas, which is part of an agricultural estate that produces wheat and olive oil in addition to wine. Your time here includes a tour as well as a tasting of 4 wines accompanied by Iberian ham, cheeses from the Balearic Island and other local products.
Alternatively, you may prefer to go on a walking tour of Palma. The choice is yours!
For lunch, a table has been reserved for you at Es Rústic Petit Restaurant, a lovely restaurant known for its authentic Mallorcan cuisine and winery. Since lunch is on your own, you may make another selection, but this restaurant is highly recommended.
In the afternoon, your driver will take you to Bodegas Jose L. Ferrer, a winery that was founded in 1931 by Sr. Ferrer. He was a pioneer winemaker in Mallorca and invented innovative ways to grow and produce wine. Your tasting will include 4 selected premium wines accompanied by Quelitas (typical Majorcan crackers), Mercadal Mahones cheese and grape jam, all local treats.
Your driver will return you to your hotel for dinner and evening on your own.
Wed, Jun 21, 2023
Day 3 - Mallorca
After breakfast, your driver will bring you to Can Axartell, a winery located in the northeast of Mallorca, not far from Pollença and Puerto de Pollença. It is one of the most modern wineries on the island and at the same time has a centuries-old history going back about 800 years, shortly after the reconquest of the island in 1229, which had been occupied by Arabs. Although the Muslims were not allowed to drink alcohol and therefore did not use viticulture to make wine, the Christian conquerors already found some vineyards. The wine was grown in Can Axartell and offered to illustrious guests from the town of Pollença in the 16th and 17th, centuries. The olive oil from the farm was also known, which has preserved 40 hectares of olive trees, some of which were planted when Can Axartell was founded.
Here you’ll be taken on a guided tour and also be served a lunch of regional specialties.
This afternoon your driver will take you on a 45-minute drive to Sencelles, where you’ll visit Bodegas Santa Catarina on another part of the island. This is a relatively “new” winery, started in 1984. What makes it unusual is that founder Stellan Lundqvist decided to plant the “noble” grapes of France, mainly Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah and Chardonnay. You’ll be able to form your own opinion about French wine in Mallorca, tasting at least 3 of the varieties along with something very Mallorcan, Pa amb oli, which is a Mallorcan cured meats and cheese board.
Your driver will then take you back to the hotel for an evening and dinner on your own. Suggested dinner choices are Es Canyis in Soller or Can Lluc, but you can make your own choice.
Thu, Jun 22, 2023
Day 4 - Time to say goodbye
After breakfast, your driver will take you to the airport for your flight home, or to your next destination. Each party will have its own driver to accommodate different departure times.
NOTE: Because it is assumed this will be a small group of 2 to 4 people, there will not be a tour manager as there was in Catalunya. Should you need additional assistance, our 24-hour customer service number will be provided.
If the group for Mallorca exceeds 4 people, Wine Lovers Travel will add some additional experiences and/or meals.
Executive Chef/Owner Otoño Restaurant
Teresa Montaño is a New Mexico-born, Los Angeles-based Chef, best known for her modern Spanish cuisine. Teresa’s unique perspective on Spanish cuisine integrates the creative use of technique and ingredients rooted in Californian sensibility, seasonality, and aesthetics. Much of Chef Teresa’s cuisine is based on her many trips through the Basque and Catalan regions of Spain. Teresa also pulls from the vast palate of the international city of Los Angeles, integrating Japanese, Chinese, Peruvian and Mexican ideas into her dishes. With strong roots in the organic food industry early in her career, Teresa developed a strong sense of stewardship towards the environment and sustainable business practices.
At age 30, Chef Teresa opened her first restaurant, Ración, in Old Town Pasadena. At Ración, Chef Teresa highlighted Basque cuisine with her modern spin in dishes like Bacalao al Pil Pil, Buñuelos de Lengua, and a very special Txuleta, a cast iron seared rib eye served with Padrón peppers. At Ración, Teresa also cowrote the all-Spanish wine list. Ración became a destination for local wine clubs and collectors to share and celebrate Spanish wine. Ración was beloved by the Pasadena community and was highly lauded by acclaimed food writers and critics, alike, including Jonathan Gold, who featured Ración as his first, full-page review upon joining the LA Times’ lead Food Critic. The restaurant was included in the celebrated LA Times 101 Best Restaurant for the entirety of Teresa's tenure as well as dozens of local and national recognitions including the Diner's Club World's 50 Best Restaurants Discovery Series.
In the summer of 2018, Chef Teresa opened Otoño, a love letter to paella and the tapas culture. The heavily anticipated, Otoño, opened with massive excitement and media coverage from Food and Wine Magazine, Eater, LA Times, The Wall Street Journal, as well as the 2019 and 2021 Michelin Guide and many more.
Michelin rated, Otoño, is based on Chef Teresa’s Spanish travel journal where she explored the many dialects of paella in the Catalan region including the birthplace of the dish: Valencia. From the celebrated, established institutions practicing traditional techniques to the young, ambitious chefs seeking to revolutionize the experience, the significance and relevance of this dish to Spanish cuisine and culture was deeply felt throughout the region. It was here, where the intermingling of the Old and New World played out over a rich canvas of cuisine, art, and culture, that the idea for Otoño was set into motion presenting an opportunity for Chef Teresa to further express her devotion to the genre and create something new for the magnificent food city of Los Angeles.
Otoño recently reopened, June 2021, after the shutdowns of 2020 ravaged the restaurant industry. The restaurant remains a well-loved neighborhood tapas bar and must destination for paella lovers and Spanish wine enthusiasts! Chef Teresa continues to reinvent her unique cooking style while paying homage to the cuisine that lives in her heart and travel journals.