After 9 months of intently following the winemaking process and careful voting, around 50 Virgin Wines Virtual Winemakers turned out for a night of celebration on Friday at Iberica Restaurant, Marylebone, in London. They came together to raise a toast to their efforts in creating a new wine, as a community, via the power of the internet.
Launched back in August, “Virgin Wines Virtual Winery – The Rioja Experience” aimed to bring together a group of wine lovers in the creation of a new wine – one that didn’t yet exist – and actively play a part in the decisions that shaped its future through a series of votes. More than 700 Virtual Winemakers took part in the project.
Since August, Virtual Winemakers have been able to follow the progress of their wine through regular updates via a dedicated online platform – allowing anyone, wherever they were located, to get involved. A series of four votes took place and covered decisions in the vineyard and winery, the wine’s name and even the label. The wine was made by our friends at Finca Manzanos – who pride themselves on combining the latest technology with age old family traditions.
This is the second time that we’ve hosted the Virtual Winery project. The first was back in 2011 when 450 Virtual Winemakers came together to make “Cordis Vinum”, a classic Lazio red which was launched at the Italian Cultural Institute in London.
Friday’s celebrations marked the end of 9 months of hard work and a unique experience for the Virtual Winemakers to meet the team from Finca Manzanos who had flown in from Spain especially for the occasion. The finished wine “Doncella Roja”, which means “red maiden” in Spanish, is a blend of Tempranillo and Garnacha. The wine had been bottled and labelled in time for the party so that Virtual Winemakers could raise a toast with it and celebrate the wine that they had helped to make.
Speaking at the event on Friday our Managing Director, Jay Wright, said, “This is the second time that we’ve hosted the Virgin Wines Virtual Winery and it has been even bigger and better than the first. The project came about from our desire to make wine as fun and exciting as possible and involving customers at every step of the winemaking process. Tonight the Virtual Winemakers came together to taste their finished wine and meet the team responsible for making it. It’s been a fantastic night.”
Doncella Roja will be available on our website to anyone else wishing to try it from mid May onwards.