“With bread and wine you can walk your road.”
Alpujarras Almeria region Valle de Luajar
Five of us visited the wine region situated in the Alpujarra region of Almeria some 185 Km drive from our home village of Periana in Axarquia. Just under two and a half hours later we arrived up into the Laujar valley via the A7 coastal motorway and then northwards via the A347. This area has many small villages producing wine, Fuente de Victoria, Fondon and Laujar to name but three.
We tried to visit the first Bodega in Fondon, we should have realized that a problem existed when we received no response to our visit application. The Bodega was there and so was their shop in the adjacent village but both were firmly closed. We had received a confirmation to visit the second bodega in Fuente de Victoria but that was at 16:00 that afternoon, so we had to find other amusement until then.
This we found by visiting the small nearby town of Laujar de Andarax located in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada. The natural Alpujarra setting makes this an ideal place for rural tourism with hill walking a very important source of revenue for the area. In the center of the town is the historic church of Encarnación dating back to the 17th century. We had lunch down a little lane leading from the church in the Restuarante Patio Andaluz. The three-course‘ meal of the day’ was excellent and a bottle or two of their recommended red wine was delicious, (Cepa Bosquet 100% Syrah grape).
After an extended lunch, we went to Bodega a Fuente Victoria. This like many of the bodegas in the area was family owned and was established in 2004 by the Suarez family. They produce nearly 250,000 liters of really excellent wine each year and export their wine to eight different countries. Their grapes are grown some 900-1200 meters above sea level and the grape variety at this level is mainly Syrah and Tempranillo.
We tasted the white 2014 Salayr and the red 2014 Cabel matured for four months in French or American Oak barrels (Tempranillo grape).2014 red Talento from the grapes Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Petit Verdot, matured for 12 months in French oak barrels.
What a great day! Especially for those not driving on the return journey who peacefully dozed through the thousands of acres of plastic sheet greenhouses, a complete eyesore for visitors but so economically important for the area’s welfare.