Vino

Winegrowing in Almansa probably dates from the 16th century, and wine has been produced in the region ever since. Almansa stands around 700 metres (2,300 feet) above sea level in the eastern corner of the province of Albacete, bordering Valencia, Alicante and Murcia. The denomination of origin, established in 1975, encompasses 8 boroughs and 7,600 hectares (some 19,000 acres) of land under vine. It includes the boroughs of Almansa, Alpera, Bonete, Corral Rubio, Higueruela, Hoya Gonzalo, Pétrola and the locality of El Villar de Chinchilla, all within the province of Albacete. In the past, the wines of this region were in great demand in other European markets for their high alcohol levels and deep colour, and they were often mixed with wines from more northerly climes, where fermentation could be more difficult, in order to add those qualities of colour and strength. These wines were traditionally shipped in bulk. Today, the winemakers of the region use modern technology to make quality bottled wine, which is winning over the palates of wine-drinkers in over 25 countries. The leading grape varieties for red wine in the Denominación de Origen Almansa are Garnacha Tintorera (which, with its unusual red flesh, produces wines of intense colour and full flavour) and Monastrell (which produce wines that are powerful and full-bodied, with a hint of sweetness). These wines are characterized by their complex aromas (of ripe fruit, smoke, a touch of log fire) and richly intense colour. The excellent levels of acidity along with rigorous oversight of the fermentation process make them ideal for the production of high quality wines well-suited to ageing in oak casks to gain ‘Crianza’, ‘Reserva’ and ‘Gran Reserva’ status. Though best known for its red wines, it also produces fresh young white wines and fruity, young, sometimes sweet, rosés. The white wines, made from Verdejo and Sauvignon Blanc grapes, are light, but with a yellow richness, and are moderately aromatic. The rosé wines run from bright strawberry-pink in colour to a lighter pink with hints of orange. These are fresh, light wines, that are vivaciously fruity in the mouth....

Matching food and wine is one of the areas of liveliest discussion among wine experts, and also among those who don’t see themselves as experts, but just want something to enhance their enjoyment of a nice glass of wine. In theory this seems quite straightforward: it’s just a question of choosing a dish and a wine to go with it. However, we’ve come a long way since the days of "it’s fish so it has to be white wine", as more and more well-matched food and wine combinations are becoming established, especially with the greater array of grapes available nowadays. So that you get the most pleasure out of your meals, we would like to suggest some foods to partner with DO Almansa wines. The white grapes most widely used for quality white wines in the Almansa DO are Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Verdejo and Muscat Blanc à Petits Grains. Wines made with Sauvignon Blanc and Verdejo, which are characteristically dry and aromatic, should be served chilled, at between 8 °C and 11 °C, and are the perfect match for raw or grilled vegetables, starchy staples like rice, potatoes and pasta, and, of course, fish. But for a fuller-flavoured grape like Chardonnay, an ideal partner might be seafood, but it also goes well with rice, potatoes and pasta as above, grilled vegetables, and white meats such as chicken, with the wine served at between 11 °C and 13 °C. Finally, the sweeter Muscat (Moscatel) grape, with its slightly higher alcohol levels, goes perfectly with lighter cheeses, with cured meats or, of course, dessert, with the wine served at around 6 °C. The red grapes most frequently used in the fine wines of DO Almanasa are Garnacha Tintorera, Monastrell, Cabernet Sauvignon, Tempranillo, Syrah, Merlot, Garnacha Tinta, Petit Verdot and Pinot Noir. Wines made from Garnacha Tintorera are a sure winner with strong and full-flavoured dishes. This grape variety goes perfectly with meat. All the way from roast lamb to meat-flavoured rice and pasta dishes, via hearty stews and casseroles. It is a perfect match for sheep milk cheese, and more substantial vegetables such as sweet peppers and aubergines Wines made with Syrah and Garnacha are often used to make rosé wines. This particular style of wine goes perfectly with seafood, grilled vegetables and white meat, and should ideally be served at between 11 °C and 13 °C.  Tempranillo and Merlot grapes are often used for young wines, and their bright freshness brings out the flavour of stronger cheeses, and both red and white meat, as well as cured meats, and should ideally be served at between 14 °C and 16 °C. For red meat straight off the barbecue and for cured meats again, we turn to Cabernet Sauvignon and Petit Verdot. These are high-quality wines with a high concentration of antioxidant polyphenols, and should be served slightly warmer, at between 16 °C and 18 °C. Finding the perfect match can seem difficult to start with, but if you explore the possibilities you’ll find the perfect partner for every meal. ...

The town of Almansa celebrated between 30 April and 6 May, the Fiestas Mayores (Main Festivals) in honour of its Patron Saint, the Virgin de Belén. These celebrations, which were declared in 1999 of Regional Tourist Interest, and of National Tourist Interest in 2008, are made up of a great number of acts, which give their nature to one of the most intense and special municipal festivals in Spain. Among them, the Homenaje al Almaseño Ausente, celebrated on 30 April in the gardens of the Town Hall. In this act, presided by the city’s Municipal and Festival Authorities, a reception tribute was held for the people of Almansa who are away from home and visit during the celebration days. For the event this year, DO Almansa offered a "tribute wine" to all the attendees who gathered there. It is an act full of emotion, encounters, stories and great wine. For DO Almansa, it was an honour to form part, not only of a unique and emotional event, but also their contribution with their wines to make the Main Festivals of Almansa even greater if possible. During the intense week of the Main Festivals, the people of Almansa demonstrate their commitment to this incomparable tradition, through activities and acts. From the “General ringing of the bells” that along with the lighting of the first tracas (fireworks) by the Festival Queens, give way to the acts, to the Señora de Belén Main Procession, closing ceremony celebration. Both residents and visitors, enjoy the good work of Almansa’s people. But undoubtedly, the peak moment was between 1 and 3 May, with the Moors and Christians parade and, above all, the Nocturnal Moorish Parade that was lived with great interest and whose celebration was key in the festivities being declared of National Tourist Interest. With the Santa Maria Square and the Castle as an amazing background frame, this representation of the city’s Reconquest transforms Almansa into a magical place, thanks to the use of special effects, fireworks, light and sound....

This ranking represents the excellence of the Spanish landraces, positioning Alaya (Designation of Origin Almansa) second among the 100 best in the world. It is great news for our wines as this ranking shows only a dozen Spanish wines. Alaya is the fruit of excellent drafting Garnacha Tintorera 15 months aging in French and American oak, this wine represents the pursuit of excellence in the cellars of the Denomination of Origin Almansa. ...

"FENAVIN is the most important trade fair for Spanish wine." This is how the daily journal ELPAIS defines it in its business supplement, and ICEX sustains the same in a value report on FENAVIN 2013. This is also the image perceived by the Spanish wineries and cooperatives that have opted for FENAVIN  2013 as an instrument for promoting the business of national and international wine industry since its inception. This proposal, based primarily on a professional attention to the buyers market , has managed, in only six editions, to make FENAVIN become the most important trade fair for Spanish wine, and the only trade fair that offers a proven business ability. Wineries from around the country participate exhibiting their wines, and we will be there representing the wineries at our booth from the 7th to the 9th of may 2013. www.fenavin.com VISIT us at FENAVIN 2013!...