2013 was a special year for us. We were celebrating the centenary of the birth of my father, Salomão Lemos Figueiredo, and the birth of my first granddaughter, while Mariana, the youngest of my three children, was getting ready to leave home for college.
My eldest son, Salomão, gathered the whole family together for his daughter Esther's first Christmas. Sitting at the table, we sipped my homemade ginja liqueur. Micael, the middle brother, said softly: “There's business here...”. And so our story began.
It wasn't the business that interested me, but my family’s curiosity. At a time when each one had their own life and independence, I found in my hobbies a way to keep them close to home. Little by little, and without driving them away, I seduced them with my experiences. After ginja, they showed interest in vermouth and spirits, until, one day, the idea came up of distilling the rich juice of Alcobaça’s apples that so often accompany our meals.
In 2015, we bought our first piece of equipment - a 25 liter manual press - and the first batch was born. Little by little, we were buying pipes, more presses, alembics and increasing the liters of production. Besides my children, the boyfriends, girlfriends, women, friends and the vast Lemos Figueiredo’s family started to show up to help. We were improving the method, the know-how and we were learning and improving as we were doing it with our own hands.
Our small winery is no longer a garage and a small vegetable garden. It slowly became Lemos Figueiredo - Adega das Frutas de Alcobaça, Alcobaça's Fruit Cellar. It became a sanctuary of conviviality and serious dedication. From our travels we shared drinks and products that delighted them and challenged me to improve and innovate. Everyone contributed with a little of themselves, their opinion and their ambitions. Since then, we have satisfactorily shared everything we produce with those close to us.
The drinks are no longer just at our table but are now in my children's studios, in Mariana's colleagues' houses, in the restaurants my children usually go to, in the houses of my friends, brothers and nephews. Everyone has become an ambassador of this adventure.
Today, and since 2016, the year of our foundation, we are working seriously to consolidate our ideas and recipes. We do it with humility and seriousness, looking for a unique identity for each product, which we are proud to share with everyone. To sip any Lemos Figueiredo’s product is to taste the tradition, love, unity, heritage and complicity that have ruled us for a century. For us, it's all that and a little more. It's special because it's made by us. Salomão Hernandez Lemos Figueiredo