Lanzarote possesses the most unique landscape in the whole archipelago of the Canary Islands, composed by the lava of many volcanoes. With the lunar aspect and bizarre landscape reaches in the National Park of Timanfaya, the island is distinguished by its nuances.
In spite of the extreme shortage of rainfall, and being located in the vicinity of Africa, the island meets the conditions for viticulture. This is in itself something of a miracle, partly thanks to the tireless work of the wine growers and the trade winds, that carry the moisture of the Atlantic on its tormented geography. Indeed the viticulture of Lanzarote is one of the most blatant examples of the dramatic struggle between a man and the environment.
The winegrower, after waging a battle with the lava in search of the soil, has to accomplish all this with minimal rainfall, the average yearly rainfall is just 150 mm. However the trade winds condense the moisture from the ocean on the porous volcanic ash, which acts like dark sponge, retaining the dew and transmitting it into the vines during the day. This process of slow osmosis allows the excellent grapes to grow on the volcanic ash, something the people from Lanzarote (Conejeros) have learned and been using wisely for many, years.
The farm creates holes in the form of a funnel (pits), into the layer of volcanic ash to reach the topsoil. At the bottom of these holes, at times up to two meters in depth, 1 to 3 vines are planted per hole. To protect these holes with vines from the constant wind, farmers build semicircular stone walls of 60 – 70 cm high, each of them protecting the plants and ensuring they are covered evenly by volcanic ash. In areas where the layer of “lapilli” is less (Tinajo, Masdache, Ye-Lajares), these circular walls are built for the protection of the vine against the wind.
In general, the grape grower (Conejero), thanks to his continuous work, has learned to fully integrate with the natural landscape, while still respecting its harsh and chaotic nature with its fascinating scenes, capable of producing an incredible livelihood. The system is of great originality and beauty, especially in the area of La Geria, thanks to them the landscape of the whole island is dotted with vineyards that add up to 3,355 hectares. From difficult, strenuous work comes ingenuity, and excellent wines.
The area of production of this Designation of Origin extends to the municipalities that constitute the island; there are three main wine-growing areas:
La Geria: An area of vineyards located between the towns of Yaiza and Tías. The ash sanding remains natural up to 5 meters deep, as a result of the volcanic eruptions.
Masdache: This is the largest area, within which we can differentiate two sub zones; Tinajo where the system of cultivation is the trench edge (zanjas perimetrales) and Masdache with its traditional vineyards.
Ye-Lajares: The area between the municipalities of Haría and Teguise. It is an area of low productivity given the type of soil in the area. The plantation frame is unique in the world. Its harvest is the earliest in Europe, the grape harvest starts in the month of July. The last ends its fermentation when the Beaujolais (earliest wine from Europe, as they say) is still in process of ripening.
The varieties from which the most distinguished wines in Lanzarote are produced are: Malvasía, Listán White, Muscatel, Diego, Burra White, Breval, Pedro Ximénez, Black Listán and Negramoll. The grape variety, predominantly Malvasía is perfectly adapted to the environment and gives a small grape, one that is low-yielding, -however of great quality with the balance between flavours and fragrances that develop later. We must not forget the Diego variety, late-maturing variety, which provides very aromatic wines. Most of the local harvest goes to the making of white wines; dry, semi-dry, semi-sweet, sweet, liqueur wines, “crianzas”, and sparkling, as well as rosé, and red wines.
Young white wines do have a straw yellow colour, and are very aromatic, highlighting the personality that gives them the “Malvasía” grape. They are pleasant to taste, balanced, with a dry almond finish.
The rosé wines are pink in colour, fresh, fruity and persistent.
The reds in general, are wines of medium intensity, great quality and good structure. Liqueur wines made from the Muscatel grape variety are very generous, aromatic and result in appetiser or dessert wines of an excellent quality.
The yield per hectare is a negative record; ranging between 1,000 and 1,500 kg. Production on the island is subject climax climate, ranging between one and three million kilos.
Lanzarote is the easternmost island of the Canarian archipelago. It is located between latitudes 28 ° 14′ 28 ° 49 ‘N and longitudes 7 º 13′ and 7 º 41′ to 1,000 km of the southwest of the Iberian Peninsula and approximately 100 kilometres to the west of Morocco.
The most important characteristic in the climatology of Lanzarote is its aridity, the climate of Lanzarote can be classified as a desert.
The practice of cultivation of the vine develops in areas where the soil was covered by a thick and important layer of lapilli. These circumstances happened in areas close to volcanic eruptions especially those that took place between the years 1730 and 1736.
The process to develop cultivation consists of opening a hole of about 3m in diameter by 2 -2.5m deep until it reaches the surface of the buried soil, which produces the planting of vines with profound root systems.
Frequently, the hole is accompanied by a stone structure that acts like a “wind cutter” that protects the plant and together with the hole composes a viticultural landscape of Lanzarote and its maximum expression reaches in La Geria.
This form of cultivation does not allow the use of machinery, so the work is carried out manually, which in addition makes it impossible to employ high planting density. It results in a little yield performance with low production, however of a high quality.
The wines with the designation of origin Lanzarote are characterized by a marked flavour, volcanic-mineral and are perfectly balanced, with relatively high acidity. There is great diversity of varieties with a predominance of the white varieties, and within these, the volcanic malvasia is its most important representative.
We are talking about a native variety here, majority of which is included in the title of designation of origin Lanzarote, perfectly adapted to the soil-climatic conditions of the island and where the volcanic-mineral, binomial acidity-flavour combination determines by extension the discriminating feature of these wines.
There is no doubt, in a dessert habitat climate, such as in Lanzarote, exacerbated by the scorching Saharan winds and in a land of volcanic nature, that the promotion of the viticulture as a living requires visual acuity, tenacity and originality.
These are therefore vineyards most unique of Spain, some buried in holes in the form of funnels, so that the roots will find fertile land and land protected from the winds by circular walls of volcanic stone. All of them however cushioned by a layer of volcanic ash (picon or lapilli) in order to retain the humidity from the atmosphere.
This form of cultivation makes the survival of vines in the volcanic soil viable, and has allowed the presence of a native variety, the volcanic malvasia, and the adaptation of the varieties that provide wine in which the balance between volcanic-mineral and acidity is achieved perfectly, and constitutes the differentiating feature of the wine of Lanzarote.
Marca: El Grifo, Chimidas y Ana
Dirección: Lugar El Grifo-Carretera Teguise-Uga, LZ-30, Km.11. 35550. San Bartolomé
Teléfono: 928.524.036, 928.832.634
Página web: www.elgrifo.com
Dirección: Avenida Los Volcanes, 116. 35560 Tinajo
Teléfono: 928.840.715, 659.971.555, 928.840.715
Página web: www.bodegasguiguan.com
Marca: La Geria y Manto
Dirección: Carretera La Geria, Km. 19. 35570. Yaiza Yaiza
Teléfono: 928.173.178, 928.173.784
Página web: www.lageria.com
Dirección: Camino a los Bermejos, 7. 35550. La Florida San Bartolomé
Teléfono: 928.522.463, 627.963.654, 928.522.641
Página web: www.losbermejos.com
Marca: Martinón y Mayor Guerra
Dirección: Camino del Mentidero, 2. 35572. Masdache Tías
Teléfono: 928. 834.160, 606.325.705, 928.512.790
Página web: www.bodegasmartinon.com
Marca: Vulcano de Lanzarote
Dirección: Calle Victor Fernández Gopar, 8. 35572. Tías
Teléfono: 928 524 459, 639 204 633, 928 524 384
Página web: www.bodegavulcano.es
Marca: La Grieta
Dirección: Calle Aulaga, 14. Punta Mujeres. Haría
Teléfono: 928 848 110, 616 908 484
BODEGAS LA FLORIDA
Marca: La Florida
Dirección: Calle La Florida, 89. San Bartolomé. Lanzarote
Teléfono: 928 593 001, 637 491 747
Página web: www.bodegaslaflorida.com
Dirección: Carretera La Geria, km. 18. Yaiza
Teléfono: 928 809 977
Página web: www.stratvs.com
Dirección: Plaza de Los Dolores, 19. 35560. Mancha Blanca Tinajo
Teléfono: 928.840.737, 649.993.096, 928.840.737
Dirección: Carretera La Geria, 2. Yaiza. Lanzarote
Teléfono: 928 173 708
BODEGAS TIERRA DE VOLCANES
Dirección: Calle Las Vistas, 18. Yaiza. Lanzarote
Teléfono: 630 889 454
BODEGAS VEGA DE YUCO
Marca: Vega de Yuco, Princesa Ico, Yaiza y Famara
Dirección: Camino del Cabezo, s/n. 35572. Tías
Teléfono: 928.524.316, 609.217.011, 928.524.316