At the foot of “Sierra del Maigmo” and “Sierra del Sit” lays a vineyard that differs from other vineyards in the Alicante region. One of the reasons for this difference could be that this vineyard was created as a dream world. Not without controversy among the well established viticulturist and landowners, Francisco Gomez created his version of Neverland.
I found his vineyard fascinating and at the same time bold. I admire the courage he has shown to break away from the customs in a country that at times seems to be trapped in its own traditions. In my mind, Francisco Gomez had no doubt that, in order to succeed he needed to offer the wine lovers something unique and special. He has accomplished his dream!
At first, looking at the architectural composition of the bodegas, I got the impression of materials and styles clashing, all of them crying for attention. However, as I left the vineyard I continued thinking about Sr Gomez as a self-made wine entrepreneur. With no family names or heritage behind his enterprise, everything he had done was created in the last couple of decades with his own hands. Then, it felt remarkable that through Spanish recession and high unemployment this vineyard is flourishing.
I began to find a meaning in all the elements of the vineyard. As you arrive, you will find a facade of an ancient Andalusian building. Clearly, it is not the simplicity of the local architecture but that one of great cities ,such as London and Paris, that have brought Egyptian and Roman elements in order to stage the cities in a magnificent scenario. Furthermore, this facade is not only ornamental it is a working building where the wine is produced.
There is also a green rusted tower overlooking the fields, very much as an airport control tower and possible undertaking similar function. It also has the added benefit of providing the visitor with stunning views and the iconic brass grapes, which give the impressions of framing the landscape from the lenses of his creator.
The vineyards are in pristine condition and there are plenty of pre phylloxera vines. You can find the indigenous Monastrell as well as other international varieties such as Merlot, Petit Verdot, and Cabernet Sauvignon. All of them are planted at 700 meters above sea level, and are ecologically handled to produce wine of high quality.
The star of the vineyard is the “Quo Vadis Fondillon Solera 1972”, which has its own hermit, dedicated to store the few barrels produced. However, they produce other nice wines such as Serrata. This red delicious wine, which is full of fruit and spices flavours, has won several awards such as “Decanter World Wine Awards 2012”. The bodega has a wide range of products for different budgets, as well as gourmet hand crafted olive oils. During the tour, the visitors are offered a selection of the in-house mouth-watering organic charcuterie.
The bodega produces a collector’s line in luxurious presentation bottles, which are ideal either for gifts or as an investment. There is also the private Vault Club, where you can store your collection of wines, at climate controlled temperature, to enjoy with friends as well as having the use of the tasting rooms.
There are places and people that we encounter during our lives that enrich us as human beings. It is important to thank them for their creation, whether it is wine or friendship. We should never miss the chance to let them know.
Bodegas Francisco Gomez is one of these places where you realize that dreams can come true. If you are visiting the region, do not miss the chance to visit this vineyard. I can assure you it will be one of the best places to visit in Alicante.
Hold fast to dreams
For if dreams die
Life is a broken-winged bird
That cannot fly.
By (Langston Hughes)