Haro Wine Festival
Haro is a small wine-producing town that is one of the most important in Spainís La Rioja region. La Rioja is world famous for producing red wine that can be found all over the world, and the town of Haro is home to 40% of the entire regionís vineyards.
Haro has been home to a wine festival since the 13th century which includes a mass celebrated at the Chapel of San Felices de Bilibio, the famous Batalla de Vino and youth bullfights. The wine festival began back in the 13th century when the people of Haro had to officially mark the property lines between them and their neighbours in Miranda de Ebro. This was done every year on San Pedroís Day as well as every first Sunday of September to ensure that the boundary between the two neighbours was maintained. This tradition lasted over 400 years until it was disregarded and the people of both sides started throwing wine at each other. That day the tradition of the "War of WinesĒ was created, which in 1965 was changed into Battle of the Wine, or Batalla del Vino en Haro as itís known in Spanish.
Whilst the mass and feast still take place and are regarded as a huge part of the townís history, the main attraction these days is the world famous wine festival including the Battle of the Wines. A week full of drinking and music with the main event being the pouring of wine on each other and into each otherís mouths at the Battala de Vino taking place on the 29th of June.
The Wine Battle in Haro, La Rioja. © Rapheal-Lopez Monne
La Batalla del Vino
On the big day itself, a parade of horsemen lead everyone the 7 km up to the Hermitage of San Felices de Bilibio, where a flag is ceremonially placed and a mass celebrated at the Chapel of San Felices de Bilibio. Then, the battle commences. All weapons are allowed during this outrageous battle: buckets, wineskins, sprayers and anything else that can be used to hurl, spray or launch thousands of litres of wine all over people. Some of you might think this is sacrilege and an absolute waste of wine but the wine used comes from grapes that have not been deemed good enough to produce the quality wines of La Rioja.
So if you are feeling adventurous why not put a date in your calendar for next year! If not why donít you celebrate San Pedroís day with us at York Wines by ordering a bottle or three of our Spanish Rioja and making the most of the weekend. Here are just a few of our Riojas that we stock at York Wines. Look on our website to find more.
Palacio de Otono Rioja Tinto
A soft and juicy, light bodied red wine from Rioja. This Palacio de Otono Rioja Tinto is filled with red fruit notes. Easy drinking, and pairs well with red meats and medium to mature cheeses. Mainly Tempranillo grape. This is one of our favourite Riojas - it just hits all the buttons with it wonderful fruit structure and balance.
CVNE Imperial Rioja Gran Reserva 2012/2014
CVNE Imperial Rioja Gran Reserva 2010 is anexcellent Gran Reserva Rioja. CVNE Imperial Gran Reserva is deeply balanced,with incredibly well-structured oak and vanilla. Lay it down if you can curbyour impatience. Tempranillo 85%, Graciano 10% Mazuelo 5%. This Gran ReservaRioja has an elegant and attractive nose, showing good intensity of ripe fruit,and some spicy oak notes. On the palate it is fine and long, full of rich fruit flavour and ripe tannins. It has great, lively intensity, rich finesse, and along classic finish
Finca Manzanos Tempranillo Rioja Blanco 2021 Spain
Finca Manzanos Tempranillo Rioja Blanco is a wine with highly intense aromas. On the nose are some sweet notes, some chamomile and then secondary aromas of peach,citrus and tropical fruits. Following next on the palate is a round, long and very pleasant flavour. The aromas and flavours are all assembled in perfect harmony with the creamy notes and spices from the oak barrels which just complete the balance of this wine.