Travels

The culture of a land, Wine Museum in Valladolid

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Views of Peñafiel from his Castle, Valladolid

The calm and infinite skies of Valladolid they cover with care one of the main treasures of the landscape. Under them there are hectares of fields dedicated to a single and exquisite cultivation, the vine. From the devotion of the passionate winemakers for their product, the recognition they obtain, with five denominations of origin in a single province attests. And it is in that province where he honors and shows the wine culture at the Wine Museum, in Peñafiel.

After fifteen years of existence and one million two hundred thousand visitors, the Wine Museum, opened in 1999, reopened its doors just over a month ago, on March 30, with exhibitions, products and facilities renewed. What has not been touched an iota is its enviable and privileged location, in Peñafiel Castle.

1200 years ago, the first and primitive castle was erected at the top of the same hill where, after successive reconstructions (which would not be the last ones) in the fifteenth century, it acquires the definitive form and distribution that reaches our days. Peñafiel Castle is a slender ship that rides on a green wave towards the line that separates the Douro and Duraton Valleys.

It is in the heart of the Ribera del Duero where we can learn more about this D.O. and the other four of the Trip to Valladolid (Toro, Cigales, Rueda and Tierras de León) in particular and about the world and the culture of wine in general.

When we flank the main entrance of the Castle (that of the courtyard, a few meters after the stairs of the outermost door), we can choose to go left or right. To the latter is access to the visit of the Castle itself and to the classrooms and tasting room (a Wine Museum without tastings? Unthinkable. In addition, an award is given annually and the “wine” of the Museum is selected).

Tasting Room, Wine Museum in Valladolid in Peñafiel Castle

On the left we have the entrance to Provincial Wine Museum of Valladolid, which is the full name, although I hope that the “Provincial” will be removed soon because the content is really international.

After flanking the entrance to the Museum, we find the shop and souvenir area, which I personally recommend leaving for the end. It is beyond this area where we access the exhibition. And we never better "agree", because one of the novelties of the Museum is its improvement to make it accessible to all types of public. It has an enclosure with the most articles on one level, wide spaces between exhibitors and content adapted to people with special visual and auditory needs.

Visitors can get to know the world of wine from the soil where the vines grow to the aromas emanating from the decanted product in a glass. They will not fail to see different techniques of work of all the processes that surround it or types of bottle in which it is packaged, until covering in nine main areas all the content of the Valladolid Wine Museum.

In the first area we learn about different types of terrain, as wine is grown from Northern Europe to New Zealand or South Africa, requiring specific but variable conditions for the vine to thrive. The main obstacle to this happening is phylloxera, which has an (ugly, because the bug is) reproduction on an enlarged scale.

It has created a free app for iOS and Android which provides information before (schedules, prices, access) and during the visit to the Wine Museum. To do this, QR codes have been installed on the panels, which on the one hand expand their information in Spanish and English, and on the other, turn the mobile phone into a free audio guide in those two languages ​​and in French.

Wine Museum, Peñafiel, Valladolid

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