Although fighting was never my thing, something is going on in the island of Mallorca this weekend that I would have loved to attend: Their grape harvest festival, La Festa des Vermar, includes what I think is the only Grape Fight in the world. The festival starts September 15 and ends September 26, in the town of Binissalem, with grape stomping, fiestas, free flow of wine, food (think obscene amounts of paella), and, the grape fight.
The festival has just recently been opened to residents from outside of the region, and although we could not go this year, it’s high on our list on things to do! Maybe we’ll see you there next year.
Called La Gran Batalla de Raim, the combatants fight in two enormous piles of grapes, where fighting really means throwing fruit at each other. After the grape fight, you clean up, and join the “eat and party” festivities at the church square.
Photo taken from http://mallorcaphotoblog.files.wordpress.com/
The festival marks the end of the local grape season, and one thinks the grape fight is a fun way to get rid of the remaining (or lesser quality) grapes before the winter sets in.
If fighting in any way, is not your thing, the grape treading competition seems equally fun. The goal is to get as much grape juice from the grapes in 3 minutes, barefoot and not touching the barrel. Balancing then by holding the shoulder of your partner! Unlike the juice from the grape fight, the grape juice from the grape treading goes into the wine created for the festival the coming year.
That will be the wine we’ll be drinking then. C U there.
Photo taken from the Mallorca Property Partners
Note: The island of Mallorca is way more famous for its beaches than its wines, so if beaches floats your boat, Mallorca is a great place to go. Nowadays there’s a growing, albeit small, number of winemakers on the island that make good wines from local grape varieties, including Manto Negro, Prensal, and Fogoneu. Sometimes blended with Cab or Syrah, and other times standing well on their own. And a lot of it (60%ish) never leaves the island, being consumed at many of the 2000+ restaurants.
I went many years ago to Mallorca for the beaches, next year I am going again, this time we’ll add wine!
Photo is taken from @potti on Flickr