One of its most significant research projects focuses on the resurgence of ancestral varieties. The initiative's mentor is Miguel A. Torres, who began the project in the early 1980s, driven by a desire to find varieties that had survived the phylloxera outbreak, which devastated European vineyards in the 19th century. The project has enabled to safeguard grapes on the verge of extinction that are part of Catalonia's winegrowing heritage. More than three decades on, the fifth generation continues the effort, having established a rigorous methodology for the identification, sanitary verification, and propagation of varieties, which are then acclimated to the most suitable soils and assessed in terms of organoleptic promise and enological potential.
Thanks to this project, around 50 varieties have been revived so far, six of which show remarkable potential for the production of quality wines: Querol, Garró—both used in the blend of the red wine Grans Muralles—Moneu, Gonfaus, Pirene and Forcada. It so happens that most of these grapes are very drought resistant and can withstand high temperatures, making them particularly interesting in light of climate change.
Climate change is in fact one of the other focal points of the Department of Innovation and Knowledge headed by Mireia Torres, which has led to its involvement in European-level partnership projects. These currently include Globalviti, which seeks to apply innovative techniques to trunk diseases, comprehensive vineyard management, and vinification processes; Vinysost, which strives to improve the quality and competitiveness of Spanish wines through the sustainable management of large vineyards; Rewine, which promotes the reuse of bottles; and Interacciona, which designs and manufactures smart labels.
The department is also working on selecting the best yeasts indigenous to each of the family's flagship vineyards in order to reflect the biodiversity of the vineyard in the wine. Another project centers on DSS (Decision Support System) where new technologies enable vineyard management optimization with regard to abiotic stress and improvements in controlling grapevine diseases.
In addition to promoting viticultural and enological research, the goal of the Department of Innovation and Knowledge is to implement new knowledge and technologies in all areas of the winery, improving the capacity to innovate and lead the future.
Innovation: the culture of knowledge
In striving to make an impact in the production of quality wines by emphasizing the importance of origin and exceptional vineyards, the fifth generation reaffirms the commitment to innovation that has always defined Familia Torres. They do so by systematically implementing new practices in the winery's production process, developing a variety of research projects, and fomenting a culture based on knowledge across all areas.