The end of DECEMBER is of course taken up with the celebrations of Christmas. However that leaves a couple of weeks for the Andalucians to celebrate their palates again. Late November and early December sees the arrival of Mosto. This home-produced wine made from that years harvest, generally during September. As you would expect however, this does not make for a wine of any great sophistication, but it does make for a wine of great freshness, fruit and fun. As it is produced in small quantities by home-based producers, from no uniform grape varieties, the quality, colour (ranging from Chenin-white to a deep rosy pink) and flavour of each mosto is totally different. The other little trick played on you by mosto is the fact that it's alcoholic content is variable over a very large range a wine box in one of our local bars says between 12 and 16 %. Our favourite mosto festival is held in the neighbouring village of Los Marines , easily walkable (well, there anyway). Last year there were 12 stalls all offering a sample of their wares free of charge, no entry fee, but purchase of a raffle ticket, 1 euro, was mandatory. They also had a big food bar area to help with ballast. There was a competition and stall 12 was declared the winner. We agreed with this, although by then we had a sneaking suspicion that the last one that you tried would always be the best due to the damage to your short term memory that prolonged mosto exposure can cause. The afternoon concluded with some tremendous flamenco singing from the father of a famous singing family covering three generations, who live in the village.


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