The Forn siblings: uncovering the historical memory of wine

24th November 2023

Success Stories

ENTREBOSC (Castellfollit de Foix, Bages)

Ferran, Enric, and Violeta. Three siblings from the Forn family are promoting the Entrebosc project at Mas Pubill del Bages, an estate where wine production was abandoned almost two centuries ago and is now being revived thanks to the drive of a generation that looks to the past to build the future.

Enric, a viticulturist; Ferran, in charge of marketing; and Violeta, freshly graduated from the Catalan School of Wine Tourism.These three siblings never thought that their childhood games would lead to a real-life project.And not just any project but an initiative linked to the historical memory of the family farmhouse itself. Entrebosc is a project that connects with the cultural heritage of the Vall de Grevalosa, a mountainous landscape located in the heart of Catalonia full of the vestiges of wine cultivation.

19th-century technology combined with an immersive reality

First off, Ferran clarifies that Entrebosc is not located on a large estate.“We are not about large productions. The added value, what sets us apart, are the dry stone constructions: the shepherd's huts and the four large wine presses where wine was made in the mid-19th century.”Indeed, it was this discovery that largely influenced the character of this project; the enormous wine presses used ancestrally for winemaking that had been converted into grain deposits and which then fell into disuse.

“The wine presses are the old vats, from around 1850, large containers where the wine was made. They are very handy for visually showing people the volume of wine that was produced before”, explains Ferran.To facilitate this educational task, they have been restored and turned into a museum using minimally invasive immersive technology.

The recovery of the heritage of this place is part of Entrebosc's commitment to the responsible production of quality organic wines, with very limited editions. A yield that can be considered low and makes it one of the smallest wineries in the Pla del Bages designation of origin.As Ferran says,“it's about taking care of the raw material and allowing the winery to express its personality. These wines are very much linked to the land where the vines are planted: a reflection of the surrounding landscape”.

In this case, it is a Mediterranean forest where the vineyards are arranged along terraces. Terraces located at a considerable altitude which, in a context of climate change, represent a future investment in mountain winegrowing.“The vineyard stands at 650 metres above sea level, the grapes ripen more slowly, and we harvest at the end of September and beginning of October”, he points out.

To make the most of the estate, the siblings have implemented a variety of initiatives, including environmentally responsible events, a task that they find very rewarding. “Every person who visits is different, and you have a new experience with each customer”, explains Violeta. All with the idea of ensuring the viability of the project. “The idea is to make a loving from the wine”, insists Ferran.

This effort to create a responsible winery which respects its cultural heritage and the environment is beginning to reap rewards: La Vanguardia newspaper's Wine Guide awarded them the Young Promises Award in 2022. An acknowledgment that augurs a very good future for them; driven by the strength of this new Forn generation which has now incorporated a new member, Maricel, the fourth sibling, whose curiosity has also been piqued by the wine running through the family veins.

Together, they will help these majestic organic vineyards, so closely tied to historical heritage, evolve, launching new projects that take advantage of the entire estate, such as restoring the 1755 flour mill, putting the reservoir into operation, and reconditioning the sluice, a space where farmers used to store water. "We are making a historic space functional. Not only to exhibit it but also to use it as part of the operation”, says Ferran.

“We have a moral obligation to preserve the environment and improve its biodiversity. Our ancestors did this for generations, so why shouldn't we”? proclaim the siblings.