Riding by train from Palma toward Mallorca’s wine country gives me that blissful feeling of travel and exploration. An exploration of Mallorca beyond the calas, cliffs, and turquoise waters (not that there is anything wrong with these) and into the residential Mallorca of agriculture, small towns, local restaurants, and wineries, lots of wineries. One of these, located just a short 20-minute ride from Palma in Santa Maria, is Macià Batle.
|Location||Santa Maria del Camí|
|Designations||Vi de la Terra de Mallorca|
Maralida Llompart Blanc
|Events||Concert de la Lluna a les Vinyes|
|Phone Number||+34 971 140 014|
The Macià Batle Story
I took a trip by train to where art, history, and wine combine in the most productive bodega on the island. Macià Batle is the name of the man and bodega that began commercial wine production in 1856, but, as I was told by Ramón Servalls Batle – the grandson of Macià – the Batles have been producing wine since the 15th Century.
Macià Batle’s bodega is in Santa Maria del Camí, a town that has been at the crossroads of Mallorcan viticulture for centuries. Today, Ramón Servalls Batle continues to reap the benefits of this locality by producing over a million bottles of wine a year on 150 hectares of land. And the land, Ramon says, is the most important aspect of wine.
The Macià Batle family respects the land for its flavors and culture that blossom forth from its soils. Despite the size and output of Macià Batle, the majority of their wines are consumed on the island. They also partner with local farmers and even nuns in a convent to sell their sobrassada and pate, respectively. The winery also teams up with local Mallorcan artists to dress their private wine collections with artistic labels. One may even find Ramón Batle himself playing traditional bag pipes, xeremies, to the young, aspiring Crianzas.
Overall, Macià Batle provides an easily accessible wine tasting experience with scenery and taste to match. A large, outdoor patio welcomed us where we sat upon stools at a wine barrel turned tasting table. With a view of the vineyards spread across the rolling Raiguer and the Serra de Tramuntana Mountain range beyond, we sampled wine and tasted local – one may even say sacred – tapas. And while we did not take the full tour of the winery, we were given permission to meander the great halls of the bodega, glass in hand, and observe the bottling stations, tankers, barrels of wine and framed art of their famed labels.
Macià Batle’s Best Wines
How do you choose? Macià Batle does it all and they do it well – from vermouth to young, single variety indigenous grape wines fermented traditionally. But below, with three of my favorites, is a good place to start.
Recommended Vintage: 2019
When friends and family arrive in Mallorca, 1856 is the bottle I buy for the occasion. The blend is typical of the island: Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah combined with the indigenous Mantonegro grape. What results is the quintessential taste of Mallorcan reds that will surely sorely be missed when off the island.
As a Crianza, the wine has been aged in oak for 6 months and in the bottle for another 18. The nose is buttery and spiced with oak from the barrel aging a deep ripe fuits. On the tongue, the non-native grapes provide 1856 with recognizable body and depth of flavor in dark foresty fruits like blackberry, blueberry and plum. But with the Mantonegro, the wine gains in minerality and becomes refreshingly smooth, finishing with a pleasant, sweet spice.
Recommended Vintage: 2016
Something special from a special winery, the Col-lecció Privada 2016 looks good a drinks eloquent. Unlike the subsequent years from the Col·lecció Privada, the 2016 leaves behind the Syrah and blends the indigenous Mantonegro (50%) with Merlot (25%) and Cabernet Sauvignon (25%). The result is relatively delicate, allowing harmony within the bouquet of grapes to expose earthy black current and blueberry on the tongue accompanied by a soft oak and vanilla nose. Overall, this wine achieves the delectable dry balance of acidity that I find characteristically enchanting in Mallorcan wines.
Margalida Llompart Blanc
Recommended Vintage: 2020
The Margalida Llompart line-up includes a red and pale rosé, both worth your time, but it is the Blanc that deserves mention. 50% indigenous Prensal Blanc and 50% Chardonnay have been blended and aged for 7 months in oak. The result is a beautiful gold wine with nice density that carries oak and vanilla flavors through the buttery chardonnay and refreshes with the mineral and citrus flavors of the Prensal Blanc. For me, a perfect balance of body, flavor, and crispness, not all too common in Blancs.
Macià Batle Events and Tours
Macià Batle wine can be tasted at most of the major wine festivals on the island, as well as Pro Wein festival held in Düsseldorf, Germany, every March. But a visit to the winery for a tasting is well worth your time, too.
The winery has five established guided tours that run every day but Sunday. The tours happen every hour or so from 11am – 4pm. They include tastings of five wines accompanied by Mallorcan tapas for 20€. You can also call to ensure a tour via reservation.
Or enjoy a tasting with tapas sans tour for 15€. The bodega boasts an inside tasting room surrounded by original art and a large outdoor patio on which to enjoy the wine, weather, and views.
I also appreciate that the winery serves bottles and single glasses. While the bottles vary in price, wines by the glass accompanied by a tapa go for 8€.
And finally, for a truly exceptional experience, join Macià Batle’s Concert de la Lluna a les Vinyes: an outdoor classical music performance held annually amongst the grape vines on a fresh summer night in early July. But also keep your eye out for seasonal concerts. The vineyard holds five to six concerts a year in their gallery or amongst the grape vines, depending on the season.
How to Get to Macià Batle
Getting to Macià Batle is a simple task by public transport or car.
From Estació Intermodal in Palma take the blue train lines T1, T2, or T3 and ride for 20 minutes. Get off at Santa Maria Estació (the eleventh stop). Macià Batle is just up the tracks, a three-minute walk from the station, off Camí Coanegra.
Head out of Palma on Carrer d’Eusebi Estada and get on the Ma-13 highway. Take exit 8 onto Ma-13A and ride it until Camí Coanegra where you will certainly see the fields of vines and the welcoming Macià Batle bodega. The drive should only take about 25 minutes from Palma.