Mr Vicente Gandía, is the first generation of this winery, the founder of the company, a man with the character and strength that established the foundations of Bodegas Vicente Gandía.
From humble origins, Vicente Gandía, was born in 1865 in Agullent, a small town located at the southern end of the province of Valencia, wine country.
Due to the few possibilities offered by his environment, he emigrated to the city attracted by the opportunities it offered, and looking for a way to develop a business career. In 1885 Mr Gandía began in the wine world as a worker in one of the French wineries that operated in El Grao de Valencia. As a result of his effort and perseverance he was quickly promoted to purchasing manager, taking care of negotiations with harvesters from the interior and learning the secrets of this sector. It was then that Vicente Gandía developed his qualities as a negotiator and began to create a reputation as a businessman.
At the end of the 19th century, due to its marked entrepreneurial character, he had already opened his own wholesale wine shop on Calle Serrano in Valencia.
The jump to the international environment took place during the export crisis that occurred between 1900 and 1910. Many French firms had to emigrate, an opportunity that Vicente Gandía took advantage of in order to start exporting on his own. To do this he bought some land in the El Grao neighbourhood of Valencia and built a winery, which was already listed in the Bailly-Bailliere Guide of 1920 as one of the 34 wineries that at that time was dedicated to the business of exporting wines.
The twenties were years of prosperity for the business and laid the solid foundations that the company would need to face the tough years to come. These years were marked by a strong contraction of the international market due to the Spanish Civil War and World War II. Unlike many other export firms that had to close, Bodegas Gandía was one of the few that managed to survive.
Having overcome this recession, the trajectory of this company has been an accumulation of constant advances and innovations.
In 1971 it was the first winery to bottle wine from Valencia with its brand Castillo de Liria, which today is a benchmark for export in terms of Spanish wines. This pioneering initiative has been followed by many others such as the acquisition of the Hoya de Cadenas estate, another fruit of this spirit of improvement that has lasted to this day, and that has allowed the production of high quality wines such as Ceremonia, Hoya de Cadenas and Bo.
Currently this company, run by the fourth generation, is the largest winery in the Valencian Community, the 15th Spanish winery and one of the 50 best wineries in the world, exporting to 85 countries on 5 continents.
It has incorporated new Denominations of origin such as Rioja, Ribera del Duero, Rueda and Rias Baixas, launching new products such as Raiza Rioja, Dolmo and its charismatic Con un Par Albariñor. In addition, its range of El Miracle 120 wines, launched in 2005 to commemorate its 120-year history, have been consolidated as modern and social wines. The new sparkling low alcohol wines, Sandara, is the latest and most revolutionary initiative of this winery. We must also mention the great solidarity project “Whatever It takes”, which combines the good work in winemaking and solidarity with the most needy, through the image donated by great “celebrities” such as George Clooney, Charlize Theron, Penelope Cruz or Pierce Brosnan among others.
It is not a sign of sadness, the vine weeps with joy.
The plants begin to awaken from a long state of lethargy in which they have remained throughout the winter, giving them the appearance of lifelessness. That is why this phenomenon of weeping is so curious since it is the beginning of the vine’s cycle that concludes with the harvest.
But this is just one of the stages that the vine goes through. Do you want to know all the phases of the vine’s vegetative cycle?
This is a very interesting process in which you can see how the plants start to be active. It occurs when temperatures increase and last approximately 3 weeks. The droop begins to rise and, through the pruning process, drops of colourless liquid spurt out, giving the sensation that the vine is “weeping”. Sometimes this liquid acquires a reddish colour, giving the impression that blood is flowing from its cuts. Because of this phenomenon, the vine growers call it “Weeping Blood”.
SPROUTING AND FOLIATION PHASE:
During the month of April, when the earth reaches 10ºC, lumps begin to appear on the branches. This is called the swelling of the buds, which is followed by the separation of the layers that cover them, giving way to small leaves. This is called foliation.
At the end of May, the flowering takes place, which consists in the flower opening for fertilization, signifying the newly formed fruit. From that moment, small clusters of very small green fruits called “bunches” will start to emerge. These fruits will develop little by little until maturity.
This occurs during the month of July. The grapes begin to change their green colour for a yellowish colour in the case of the white and red varieties used for red wines. In addition, the grapes lose acidity and start to accumulate sugars. It is during this phase that the red and white varieties can be distinguished, since until this point all varieties of grape are green.
The winemakers and oenologists are the ones who, in the months of August and September, carry out exhaustive controls on the maturity of the grape, in order to determine the right moment of harvest according to the type of wine that they want to make.
After the harvest, the droop of the plant begins to drop, which causes the leafs to change their colour from green to reddish, from when they will later fall completely, exposing stems or branches.
During the cold months, approximately between November and March, the plant of the vine is in a state of rest. In this phase it looks like the plant has died. It is at this time, generally during the month of January, when the pruning takes place.
From here the cycle begins again and the vine will weep again.