The Extraordinary and Forgotten Origin of Florida’s Wine Culture

Map of East Florida from William Bartram

Cerda, Llanos y Cia., a Miami-based Spanish wine importer and wholesale distributor will host a historical and cultural heritage exhibit on tthe legacy of the Minorcan community in Florida and how that relates to the introduction of wine culture.

When one looks into the birthplace of American’s appreciation of wine, grape vine cultivation and winemaking, their origins are markedly Spanish and surprisingly with roots to the Balearic Islands off the coast of Valencia and Barcelona. Settlers from these islands that include Mallorca and Menorca played an integral role in the introduction of wine culture into our present day American society and interestingly this occurred simultaneously and independently during the latter part of the 18th Century in what is present day California and Florida.

Cerda, Llanos y Cia., a Miami-based Spanish wine importer and wholesale distributor that specializes in wines from the Balearic Islands, will host a historical and cultural heritage exhibit on this subject that will shed light on the legacy of the Minorcan community in Florida which dates back to 1768 when they settled as indentured slaves in the area of St. Augustine and how that relates to the introduction of wine culture. The exhibit has been recognized as a Signature Event by the Florida Department of State as part of its Viva Florida 500 initiative to celebrate the 500th anniversary (1513-2013) of Juan Ponce de León’s arrival on Florida’s East coast.

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