In 2008, ten years on from its foundation, DFJ Vinhos is proud of how far it has come: the Portuguese company holding one of the largest shares of the British market, equivalent to the export of one and a half million bottles annually. In just these few short years, the company has had a global impact in an increasingly competitive sector and now exports some 90% of its production, representing some 5.4 million bottles, the overwhelming majority targeting the medium segment with a highly competitive pricing strategy.
The Estremadura regional Ramada, a brand in the meantime disposed of, was market leader in the United Kingdom while other reds from the same region, such as Portada, Coreto and Manta Preta, are already benchmarks in the Scandinavian markets and accounting for 15% of the exported volume. Canadian state monopolies represent the destination for a further 10% of total Estremadura and Terras do Sado regional wine exports. In addition, and on a smaller scale, DFJ is also present in the United States, Russia, India and Brazil as well as a range of countries from across the five continents: in the European Union, Germany, Austria, Belgium, Spain, France, the Netherlands, Ireland, Italy and Luxemburg and further eastwards in Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Bulgaria, in Africa, São Tomé e Príncipe, Angola and Mozambique, down under in Australia and New Zealand with Asian countries including China, Japan, Singapore and Thailand. Internationalisation, volume and diversification of the product range, excluding only Vinhos Verdes and fortified wines, are the guiding principles for a company with the priority objective of obtaining the best quality/price relationship for each of its products so as to best ensure client satisfaction.
This strategy has already brought benefits judging not only from the growing profile achieved in different world markets as well as that of Portugal but also the many awards, particularly internationally with over 80 prizes won at the International Wine Challenge (IWC), including two Red Wine of the Year awards.
Oddly, and despite the scale of its annual average production - six million bottles -, DFJ does not run vineyards but only makes the wine. To this end, it sources its raw materials through partnerships established with various vineyards across the country among which is the Neiva Correia family company. Coreto and Portada - the two lowest priced wines - make up 20% of total company production. Finally, the extensive portfolio is supplemented by the rosés - Pink Elephant, Coreto, Casa do Lago and Grand´Arte - "increasingly in fashion" and with an upper market positioning, there are the fine quality whites and reds: Grand´Arte and the DOCs of Alenquer, Ribatejo and the Douro in addition to the Icon range Consensus and Francos Reserva.
Then there is also the Quinta do Rocio red, an unprecedented project brought about by a partnership between DFJ Vinhos and Tomás Sanches da Gama, owner of one of the most beautiful and finest estates in Alenquer and which adjoins the Quinta de Porto Franco. The Rocio lands are also a historical estate of excellence given that it was here that the famous wine maker the Viscount of Chanceleiros was born and raised. The planting of the first vines can be traced back to 1503 when Pedro Álvares Cabral acquired the property. Since then, the estate has been passed down between various families and circumstances through to 1939 when it was purchased by Tomás Sanches da Gama, the father of the current similarly named owner who inherited it at the age of 17. Launched in 2007, the first Quinta do Rocio (meaning dew) harvest resulted in an unusual blend of the Syrah, Merlot, Touriga Nacional and Grenache varieties and signed by both José Neiva Correia and Lisete Lucas.