Hundreds of people buy wine from cellar destroyed in flash flood
Visitors flock to Espluga de Francolí, near Tarragona, to purchase bottles recovered from mud
Hundreds of people traveled to the small town of Espluga de Francolí, near Tarragona in southern Catalonia, on Friday to purchase wine from the cellar that was destroyed in a flash flood on the night of October 22.
The Celler Rendé Masdéu wine cellar was completely devastated by the heavy rains that hit Catalonia, leaving at least 3 dead and another 4 confirmed missing, and today it sold bottles that were recovered from the mud in an attempt to raise funds to get the family business running again.
The 'mud wine' bottles date from 2017 and went on sale for €15, with business owner Mariona Rendé describing the support she has received as "incredible."
"I have to send wine to Toledo, Madrid, Seville or Doñana. Also to others who own wine cellars, because they understand what it means to lose a cellar," Rendé explained.
Revenue from the sale of 'mud wine' – accounting for 10% of this year's production – will help Celler Rendé Masdéu make up for their losses: "It will help us financially to be able to continue buying empty bottles, corks, labels, and boxes. To clean the items we've been able to salvage, label them, and to fulfill our clients' orders."
Although the cellar was swept away, the business' 11 hectares of organic crops were not affected by the flooding, and in the long run, Celler Rendé Masdéu does plan to reopen the cellar, but likely in another location.
Other bottles that have been recovered are not on sale as their contents have not yet been identified, while the 'mud wine' was initially intended for the Christmas season and stored in distinctly shaped bottles. The other bottles will be sold online as soon as they are identified.