Sicus is located in Bonastre, in Tarragona and led by a remarkably single-minded young wine craftsman called Eduard Piè. His vineyards are all about indigenous varieties alone, organically grown and exclusively amphora fermented in vessels of local clay, some of which are actually buried in the vineyards. Sicus is the ultimate expression of the surrounding landscape, the salinity of the sea, minerality of the soil and the fruits and flowers of the forest.
Eduard's wines are made exclusively with native grapes, which have adapted to their terroir over generations. They are not suffocated with herbicides or pesticides and are instead allowed to grow among naturally-occurring wild flora and fauna, with minimum intervention.
Preserving the landscape is at the forefront of everything that Eduard does; he leaves the soil un-ploughed, allowing grass, weeds, earthworms, ants and other species to flourish as well as abstaining from synthetic fertilisers, so his calcareous soils are allowed to do their work unhindered. Even artificial irrigation is shunned in favour of allowing the local weather to dictate the qualities of the grapes, and therefore the wines made from them. Eduard describes each bottle as a “liquid synopsis” of the meteorological conditions in which the vines were grown.
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It was back in 2003 that Eduard began to hone his skills as a winemaker when he took on the responsibilities of his family estate. He also worked for the prestigious vineyards of Jane Ventura in Penedes whilst continuing his studies. During this time, he produced only a very small quantity of wine, only moving on to the current Sicus project after years of preparation.
Much of the winemaking is conducted using porous clay jars, which allow micro-oxidation of the wine and avoid flavours being picked up from barrels. Eduard also uses amphoras, positioned right there on the vineyard, to keep most of the vinification process in the terroir. The taste of the wine differs depending on how it is made, in the cellar or on location.
The vines are all grown in the mountain range of Massís de Bonastre which surrounds the small town of Bonastre. The lowest part of the valley stands at 170 metres above sea level. The mountains are located between the great plains of Alt Camp and Baix Penedès, and their vineyards are swept by the fresh air from both the mountains and the nearby Mediterranean Sea, which is just 6 kilometres away. Penedes is mostly known for its Cava, making Sicus a rare treat. Bonastre is a small village with a population of just several hundred, and Sicus is one of three producers here.
The vines are planted in shallow soil that is low in both moisture and organic matter. This gives the grapes an intensity of flavour and the plants themselves strength, as the roots reach out in search of water. The grape varieties employed are Xarel-lo, Monastrell (Mourvèdre), Sumoi and Malvasia de Sitges, all of which are native to the mountains and have spent years adapting to the terroir.Location