During the festivities of El Provencio we were able to visit the Pago de la Jaraba, a place located between the terms of El Provencio and Villarrobledo where in addition to winery we find a cheese factory and an oil mill, which makes it unique in Spain. In addition, for some years it has achieved the status of Pago which gives it a uniqueness of its wines.
How to get to Pago de la Jaraba?
The only way to get there is by car past El Provencio at the junction of San Clemente we take direction Villarrobledo until the indication of the Payment, at the entrance there is a park of solar panels so you have no loss.
In order to visit the Payment we must make the reservation previously:
Arrival at Payment
Once we enter the entrance to the Pago a few meters we will find the building where the winery is located, which is the Visitor Reception Center. At the entrance they have a viewpoint as a kiosk of music from where you can see the sea of vineyards that has this place of 1000 ha. Behind the door is the tourist train with which the different facilities are toured with a capacity of 54 people.
We get on the train in the direction of the cheese factory, due to the summer heat we did not stop at the ship where the sheep were, since the flies and smells were not very pleasant. But if we crossed it with the tourist train and we could see them. They commented that they have divided on one side the offspring, those who are pregnant and those who have just given birth since each one requires a different diet. They also told us that they have the animal welfare certificate so the animals were in good condition and with adequate space for them.
Visit to the Cheese Factory
After parking the train we accessed the cheese factory in a building that followed the aesthetics of the winery building. During the visit they told us that their cheeses are 100% Manchego cheese artisans. The artisan nuance means that they do not pasteurize the milk before making the cheese. This forces him to keep his cheeses in quarantine in order to be consumed, which eliminates the microorganisms present in the milk. For this reason they do not make fresh cheeses, but directly have to be cured or semi-cured.
Like other cheese factories the process is similar, except that having the cattle next to the facilities have a continuous production of milk so the cheese factory is in production every day except Sunday.
Visit to the Oil Mill
We take the tourist train again to approach the facilities of the oil mill. Despite having facilities for large production, its levels are more modest. This is because as they told us, they do not pick the olive as would be expected in the month of December or January when the olive is ripe enough to easily detach from the tree, but they pick it in the month of October when it is still green to intensify the aromas of the oil. Even so, this has a but and is that 60% of the olive stays on the tree since the machine can only extract a part because it is not ripe enough to be easily detached from the tree.
So with a modest production, at the moment it is decided that it is the right point to collect it, on the same day it already has oil to be able to package.
Surprise of the visit
Before contInuar back to where we started to visit the winery, we made a stop at a Manchego Mill. This mill named Gaspar as responsible for the Payment, is a whim of its owner so it is quite new with a complete machinery to be able to make a grind. If you want to see the mill in operation every year in San Isidro they do the grinding and even make a cake with the flour from the mill.
After climbing the mill and seeing the machinery and the views from the windows, we continue our visit.
Visit to the winery
We arrived back at the main building for a walk through the wine cellar. El Pago dedicates 77 ha to the vineyard where varieties such as Tempranillo, Graciano, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Sauvignon Blanc are grown. In addition to being listed as a Payment for the uniqueness of its soils, it is part of the DO of La Mancha.
Once in the winery we see the tanks and barrels that blend in with the decoration of the building. Its wine production process does not differ from other wineries. They use, for example, the dumping of the grapes by gravity, a more ecological and more natural system to start the fermentation of the grapes.
From this process they obtain three reds under three brands: Azagador, Viña Jaraba and Pago de La Jaraba. The first made with Tempranillo, Merlot and Graciano grapes. The second and third are a blend of Tempranillo, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, the third being made with selected grapes. As for white wines, they produce two monovarietal wines from Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc grapes.
We enter the barrel warehouse, first a large one and then the one used for the malolactic fermentation of its most important reds.
After the visit we make the tasting of their products, with a tray of cheeses, another of bread where to dip their oil, accompanied by a glass of red wine. The place of the tasting also has its charm since it is the entrance of the patio of the house where traditional objects such as Villarrobledo jars to Talavera tiles are exposed, all very Manchego and with a very special charm. After enjoying the products of the Payment we go through the shop, where we took home a bottle of wine, a cheese and an oil.
And so we ended our visit to this unique Pago, a visit that is well worth making since there are three visits in one. In a space that represents all the charm of La Mancha architecture.
Where to eat
After the visit I recommend you came to eat at the Hotel Restaurant Tierrallana and then take a walk through El Provencio where you can discover one of the best urban art routes in Spain
Where to sleep
If you want to discover the Pago de la Jaraba and explore the beautiful corners that the Záncara region hides, here you have the best accommodations:
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Artículo publicado en rutasporespana.es/blog