Spring is one of the best times of the year, good weather and green fields full of wildflowers. Also it is the time for many popular celebrations in the region of Rioja.
Spring begins in our hemisphere between the 20th and 21st March, and its name <spring> comes from sprouting meaning when the first buds of the vines are born. It is a decisive moment, and very delicate as this is the beginning of the formation of future bunches. Therefore any rain or hailstone that occur at this time could affect the work of the whole year. However, despite this uncertainty it is a wonderful time in the vineyard. During spring the work in the vineyard is focused on taking good care of the soil with fertilisation in order to nurish the future bunches.
A few months later, between April and May, foliation (leaf growth) takes place, another important development of the vine which takes place during spring. The leaves of the vine begin to appear and carry out the vital functions needed by the plant: respiration and photosynthesis. In addition, it is in the leaves where the molecules of the acids and sugars are formed that will accumulate in the grape giving the flavour.
It is also at this time when green pruning begins. Green pruning is a practice which is carried our in May. Growers cut back the plant taking away any excess grape bunches or vegetation. In this way all the resources of the plant are concentration on the bunches needed therefore giving better quality.
Rioja is a region of traditions and spring is also a time of celebration in many of Rioja’s towns.
The Alfaro Spring Festival is one of the best known activities for the whole family. A celebration with Alfas wine tastings, parades, charangas, concerts and arts and crafts workshops.
The Mercado de la Huerta de Varea is also traditionally celebrated in the spring. A market where they present the best fruit and vegetable produce of Rioja. Here you can find a great variety of vegetables and fruits, and also sausages, saffron, oil, jams, fardelejos and plants.
Spring is the perfect season to visit the Rioja in order to enjoy the beautiful scenery and the fresh produce, of course accompanied by our delicious wines.