Gerard Batllevell Simó created the winery Joan Simó, his grandfather's name, in 1999. While the Simó family is from Porrera, historically it was involved in the textile business, selling the fruit from the vineyard to the cooperative. An uncle of Gerard ended up making wine and selling it in bulk in France, an activity that was discontinued in the 1980s.
Joan Simó works only with grapes from the 12 hectares of the winery's own vineyards, located in the municipality of Bellmunt del Priorat and on the enormous 150-hectare estate in La Garranxa, in the municipality of Porrera. The vineyards are planted with the red varieties Garnacha, Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah and Merlot. The winery markets 20,000 bottles per year, most of which are exported to the United States.
The vinification and ageing cellar are located in the basement of the family manor house, a building dating back to the 19th century. The winery strives to produce "territory" wines, ones that reflect their origin and embody the personality of where they come from. The small size of the facility allows for close attention to every aspect of the winemaking process.
Visits (by appointment) to Joan Simó include a tour of the vinification cellar, where guests learn about the winery's history, and a sampling of the firm's crianza wine.