The vineyards of this northern region of Tenerife have a characteristic that gives their wines their unique taste: using traditional techniques for centuries by twisting the grapevine with cord. This, together with the temperate climate, the volcanic soil, the sea of clouds and the Alisios winds, makes the wines of the La Orotava Valley Denomination of Origin stand out.
The most common grape varieties for white wines are Listán Blanco and Listán Negro and others, such as the Creole Alley, Aromatic Malvasia, Gual and Moscatel. And for red wines; Negramoll, Syrah, Vijariego and Tintilla.
It was the European immigrants who brought their techniques and way of working the land of the Canary Islands. Great wines were already being produced in the 16th century, leaving the small dock of Puerto de la Cruz for England, even before the arrival of port and sherry to those places.
The fact that there are exclusive varieties of wine to the Islands, or that the forms of cultivation were unique, is due to the fact that it is one of the few places in the world that didn’t suffer from the dreaded insect, phylloxfera that destroyed European crops.
Canarian wine is, above all, the history of its vineyard and its landscape, a result of the very hard work of its wine produces, which gives the region its stunning landscape and its uniqueness.
In Tenerife there are five Denominations of Origin and each one has been cultivated on land different from the others, using different varieties of grapes that have adapted to the type of land.
Visit one of the wineries to learn about this unique scenic heritage and to taste their wines. Get in touch with the Regulatory Council and schedule your visit.
Banana The Canarian BananaThe Canarian banana has a very sweet flavour, due to its high sugar content and its low starch content. It gives off an intense aroma, whilst its peel is covered in dark spots.
The banana arrived in the Canaries in the fifteenth century from Andalusia, or perhaps from Guinea, introduced by Portuguese expedition. For centuries, it has been the main driver of industrial development and economic growth. In the mid-nineteenth century, Puerto de la Cruz was filled with banana plantations. In 1913, 900 ships entered and left the city with fruit for Liverpool, London, La Pallice, La Rochelle and Hamburg; and it wasn’t just fruit, because the ships of the all-powerful Yeoward Brothers alternated the fruit industry with tourism by transporting tourists in comfortable cabins.
The banana packaging ships plagued the city centre for decades, occupying the land closest to the dock. The packaging company FAST Sociedad Agraria de Transformación (formerly the Agricultural Union of the North of Tenerife) is well known in Las Arenas, in the neighbourhood of La Vera.
Tenerife’s Cooperative Banana Association, located in El Botanico Street, played a key role in the industry and exported 4.49 million in 1967. The site still exists and until a couple of years ago you could still visit it.
There are excursions around the Orotava Valley that include a visit to a banana plantation and a cooperative, where you can learn about the process of packaging, transportation and distribution.
Find out more: La FAST Delegación Norte (La Orotava) – Ctra. Gral. Las Arenas 2 Telephone: 922 38 15 74 www.lafast.org
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