It all began in 1497 when Don Alfons Velho from Portugal planted the first vines in Tenerife in the hills of Rambla de Castro in Los Realejos, after which the art spread to the rest of the island.
Around 500 years later, there are still approx. 100 hectares of vineyards in Los Realejos, with the majority of white wine grapes located in La Cruz Santa, the nerve centre of the wine sector. The excellent quality of these grapes and the wine has turned the municipality into the ‘Mecca’ of white wine production for experts from the different islands.
This wine, as is true for many things from the Valle de La Orotava, has won well-deserved fame over the course of history for having been the first vineyard in the Canary Islands. In the XVII and XVIII centuries, these wines were exported to England and her colonies, to Germany, Holland, and Latin America. Such was their reach from these vineyards that the highly esteemed native of Los Realejos, José de Viera y Clavijo, was told that the valley was one huge grapevine.
At the moment this sector is on the rise, as is the gastronomy sector. There are numerous establishments to choose from, but the most typical is our traditional ‘Guachinche’ restaurant, which offers a welcoming environment where you can sample the best homemade food and home-grown wine.
The vineyards included under the Destination of Origin Valle de La Orotava – also inclusive of the municipality of Los Realejos – use a cultivation method that is found nowhere else in the world. This method requires significant amounts of manual labour throughout the cultivation process, right from the moment the grapevine is planted, making wine production and the resulting wine a truly artisanal craft. The method used is called the Multiple Stem Braiding (Cordón Múltiple Trenzado), which is a technique that has been used in the area for centuries and gives the wines their unique characteristics.
These are the different varieties of grapes that can be found in Los Realejos: White wines: Listan blanco (Palomino variety) at over 60%, Albillo criollo, Malvasia aromatica, Vijariego, Moscatel de Alejandría, Verdello and Marmajuelo. Red wines: Listan negro at almost 22%, Negramoll rosada, Tintilla, Vijariego negro, Castellana, Baboso negro and Negramoll negra.
Did you know…?
- Alfons Velho from Portugal planted the first vineyards on the island of Tenerife in la Rambla de Castro in Los Realejos in 1497. The cultivation method called ‘Multiple Stem Braiding’, which has been used by vine-makers in Los Realejos and Valle de La Orotava for centuries, is not used any where else in the world.