"Wine tours, tastings and historic sites ...more than wine"
Valencian Cellar Tours
**DO Valencia - Winery & Xátiva City/Castle - Full day **
The Clariano in the south of the province is part of D.O Valencia largely focusing around the town of Fontanars dels Alforins; Vastly dominated by black varieties such as the old bush vine Mourvèdre aka Monastrell, Tempranillo, Cabernet Sauvignon & Syrah but also offering fresh dry white wines with more recent plantings. Voignier, Sauv. blanc, Muscat Blanc á Petits Grains, Pedro Ximénez & the recovery of the almost extinct variety Verdil perform well here in cooler zones. Modern techniques and restrained use of oak fermentation add weight, richness and complexity to these wines without overpowering the terroir and varietal indentity.
We visit the area known as "La Toscana" in the Vall d´Albaida, a hidden valley with gently rolling hills with historic stone houses amidst vines & almonds. The town of Fontanars has an ancestral art of winemaking dating before the Moors whose low number of estates produce distinctive outstanding wines with an emphasis on organic winemaking. Vinum magazine chose a vintage red from a Fontanars estate as one of the top 10 organic wines in Europe & Robert Parkers Luis Gutiérrez awarded many wines 90+ points in 2019.
In the past one mainly thought of Valencian wines as the sweet white Moscatel variety but as one wine critic wrote,
" Heres another organic red to show how much things have changed in a short time . It is ambitious, richly flavoured and has voluptuous scents of ripe black fruits infused with the toast & vanilla of oak casks, this is the new face of the Med."
This trip offers much more than wine with great scenery and a chance to see Valencia´s other enchanting historic city.
DO Valencia Winery visit
First upon arriving in the valley we stop for a morning coffee, maybe try a carajillo....the local´s typical morning, flambé expresso with shot of brandy, lemon & floating coffee beans.
Our visit is to a leading organic winery where the bodeguero will explain the history of the bodega & family house and their non-interventionist approach to winemaking. Walking through the vines you find out about the varieties grown on the estate and their curious often low-tech techniques. We then tour the winery process; harvesting of the grapes; the fermentation processes; the art of oak aging choosing the modern critique & not conforming to Crianza/Reserva nomenclature; final light filtration before bottling the wine !
We may taste the aging wines directly from the barrels or tanks if just after harvest...
You then have the pleasure of tasting the wines in the rustic house or in the garden with sunshine overlooking the vines ....
Above Xativa run the ruins of a once grand castle of 30 towers. Home to General Hanibal in 218BC it remains an impressive fortification. Xàtiva, capital of the Costera district is an elegant market town with wide tree lined avenues & shady cafes. The old walled town still retains an "old world charm" with its many pretty squares, fountains, churches and cobbled streets. Hailing 2 popes & the Borja history Xativa has played a significant role in the history of the church.
It was declared Historico-Artistico ensemble in 1982 due to the wealth of historic buildings & emblematic monuments.
The most notable include; the Castle with its 30 towers & 4 gates, the Collegiate de Santa Maria XIV- former cathedral rebuilt in renaissance style, the Hospital Mayor De Pobres XV-XVI, Ermitas de San Felix XIII, San José XVIII & Santa Ana XVI, the church of San Pedro XVII & San Francisco XIV, Gothic Fountain de Plaza de la Trinidad, La Puerta Gótica de los Trinitarios XIII, house of Pope Alejandro XVI & numerous palaces of noblemen.
On our visit to Xàtiva you have a chance to explore the old town, walking the historic streets before a well deserved lunch.
Lunch. We have a table reserved in a "Berasetegui award winning" restaurant in Xàtiva where you will be welcomed by the chef on arrival.
It´s a 4 cse meal of creative mediterranean cuisine accompanied by quality DO estate wine of low yield.
Relax with a coffee or brandy afterwards before the Castle visit.
We then make our way up to the castle, but don´t worry about the hundreds of steps as we drive to the main gate via a winding road. You then have time to explore the castle and admire the 360 degree valley views as the Romans once did. A charming café also serves refreshments on the terrace of the castle.
We then finally return arriving in Valencia city approx. 1830hrs.
Price: From Euro189 p/p variable with number people. (Castle closed Mondays)
(Inc.4cse gourmet lunch (90+pt wine,cerveza,mineral water) morning cafe/pastries,winery tour & tastings,Cathedral+Castle admission)
- Pickup hotel in Valencia City 0850hrs.
- Morning Coffee, guided vineyard visit & tastings.
- Cathedral interior possible subject to timings..please ask
- Panoramic vineyard drive to Xàtiva.
- Xàtiva medieval city walk, 4 cse Gourmet Lunch/quality wine,cerveza, mineral water at award winning restaurant,
- Xativa Castle visit .
- Return arrival in Valencia city approx. 1830hrs or earlier on request .
Duration: Full day 8-9hrs - see photos below
*Sunday/Festive day tour supp. Euro25 per booking.
+ 34 617 969 975 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org