When Timmer told me he had set up an interview with Daphne Glorian, Clos i Terrasses proprietor, I have to admit I was a little intimidated. After all, she is a rockstar in the wine world and we are unknown upstarts, more unknown than up starting. Glorian’s 2004 Clos Erasmus was the first Catalan wine Parker had ever awarded a perfect 100 point score, plus she did it again with the 2005 vintage. Lightning struck twice for Clos i Terrasses, and also had several 99s to go along with the two 100s.
So why the nervous intimidation? I am half of a wine website that is not even four months old and have no idea what Parker would think of it, much less rate it. Maybe he’d give us a smiley face instead of a number, like Clos Figueras does in their barrel room. For these reasons I could hardly believe Daphne would even agreed to meet with us and go on camera. But meet us she did, and I was wrong. Very wrong.
You see in the wine world where pretence often runs rampant, one could easily expect someone like Daphne Glorian (with her status, accomplishment and following) would be justifiably very proud or even arrogant. Certainly she was only meeting with us as a favour to someone else (Timmer’s known for his charm and networking abilities) and probably couldn’t wait for it to be over. At least that is what I was expecting and even prepared for. However, I refer you to the last two sentences of the last paragraph.
What I got instead was a warm and modest person who was not only happy to meet with us, but even met us by the playground in Gratallops and gave us a lift to her home/barrel room/tasting room. It wasn’t in a fancy Jaguar or Aston Martin. Moreover, she did it with a smile and the ease of a friend.
Here’s a wine superstar, a modern day enogoddess making me feel welcome and making me feel comfortable. Creating comfort for the people we interview is usually my job, it’s what I do. It’s not supposed to be the other way around. Yet, there she was trying to create a relaxing environment for me in order for me to reciprocate the same feeling to her.
Before we started shooting, Daphne confided in us she very much dislikes doing written interviews, and doing on-camera interviews even more so. Print journalists rarely write the whole story and have often taken things she says out of context. Being on-camera? Daphne says it causes her to feel awkward and self conscious; she admitted to me she’s naturally very shy.
As she relaxed we simply talked and forgot about the camera. We went out of our way to forget the camera was running, and I believe for many moments during our conversation Daphne and I truly did forget the camera was on. As she shared with us about her humble and almost happenstance beginning in wine, the aura I had wrongly preconceived fell away and in its place grew a natural radiance. The superstar misconception gave way to a remarkably spirited, good hearted and lovely woman who is both proud and modest as well as confident and insecure. Daphne says she is still learning about her wines and her terroir, and it isn’t lip service. The master of wine perception I had created is more of a craftsperson focused on her trade rather than the trappings of success.
Yeah, I was very wrong about Daphne. I put her on a pedestal she probably deserves but to this day won’t accept. In our time with Daphne, I learned a great amount about who she truly is, rather than more about her wine story. Daphne Glorian is a kind-hearted, down to earth and hard-working woman who has not sat back on her success. Just don’t use the success cliche with her, because she’ll blanch at its mention. She views her time in Priorat as a journey of self-discovery, rather than a series of goal-oriented accomplishments.
If I had to guess what her secret is, Daphne loves what she does. She loves discovering what the land and her grapes tell her, and what they say changes every year. All Daphne does is let her Clos i Terrasses wines, Clos Erasmus and Laurel, do the talking. Daphne just amplifies what they are trying to say to the world.