PeñoncilloVineyard
Peñoncillo vineyards is located in the outskirts of Manilva, some 1.2 kms from CIVIMA in the Paraje del Peñoncillo, that is half way between Manilva old town and the Mediterranean Sea.

Manilva already has the most complicated element, that thing no one can imitate or buy: the vineyards...old and twisted vines, loaded with knowledge. With money, you can build huge cellars; you can buy expensive equipment or hire the best oenologists. But money can’t buy the vines we have here. This is the real heritage of Manilva. And its uniquemicroclimate, with the Mediterranean and the Atlantic Ocean fighting constantly with their east and west winds. In the middle of all, the Gibraltar Straights. And behind, the mountain ranges, protecting from the cold and providing rains more typical of other latitudes, more northern. And its soil, white Albariza, that allows to cultivate in strict dry conditions, as it doesn´t between June and September.

Peñoncillo, vineyard, with 1.8 hectares, is over 50 years old, as most of the vines in Manilva. Located on the hillsides of moderate to steep slopes, with a very narrow seeding frame and long and twisted arms that drag towards the ground, the introduction of machinery to ease the works is almost impossible, with the exception of hustlers to stir the soil and remove weed in the period between the pruning and the first sprouts. It is a normal practice within the municipality the use of herbicides, which saves lots of work but also it is very negative for the environment (contamination of soil and water, elimination of vegetation and animal biodiversity, compactation of soil, etc.). One of the middle term targets will be to eradicate this farming practice.

Almost all old Manilva vines are of the Alejandria Muscatel variety, cultivated with vase or cup shape. The adaptability to the strong winds in the area (due to the influence of the Straights) contributes to the tendency of the grapevines to grow in a creeping way, very close to the ground. Against the logic applied in viticulture, the best bunches and those that present a better sanitary state, are the ones that grow along the ground, that acts as drier against the wet winds and the nightly dew, conditions that cause severe damage to the more exposed bunches, due to fungus. We are introducing on an experimental level, several different varieties to Muscatel, guided in trellis, and the first impressions are more optimistic than those normally obtained with the Muscatel variety of grape.

The Peñoncillo vineyard has a CAAE certificate of Organic Farming. The grape harvest is done in crates of 7-8 kg, and by selecting the grapes bunch by bunch, as if its destination was the fresh market. The performance of this vineyard is very low, with an average of 1 kg/grapevine.



Taking advantage of its amazing views, the Peñoncillo vineyard has two wooden gazebos, with seats and tables, making it an open-air classroom where visitors can enjoy the countryside, tasting at the same time the wine produced from the grapevines they are contemplating.

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