Admit it. You like to drink a good glass of wine, especially when you are on a holiday, on a day off, or after work. With fish, with desert, with BBQ, … There is always an appropriate wine and an appropriate occasion to drink wine, unless you are pregnant, religious, or a member of the AA.
This blog post is for the wine lovers who want to indulge even more in their obsession with wine. Imagine that you could not only taste wines, but also learn about its consumption and purchase wine while you travel at or near its source. Imagine that you could visit wineries, make vineyard walks or even participate in harvesting the grapes. Well, imagine that is nowadays called enotourism, or wine tourism.
Keep reading to find out WHY enotourism is the new travel trend!
“I’ve never owned a vineyard, but I’m pretty sure I’ve drunk one”.– From Julie With Love
This week I tried out Enotourism in Mallorca, because, you know… I am getting a bit spoilt… When you spend a lot of time on an island, you kind of want something else than beaches, hikes, city trips and boat rides all the time. I was looking for a different experience on the island, and that’s how I bumped into this wine experience! Here follow 7 reasons why it is the new travel trend!
1. Enotourism is So Much More Than Tasting Wine
According to our best info friend Wikipedia, Enotourism (AKA oenotourism, wine tourism or vinitourism) refers to tourism with the purpose of inclusion of tasting, consuming or purchasing wine, often at or near the source. Being different than most other types of tourism which are more passive in nature, enotourism can also consist of actively participating in harvesting grapes, doing vineyard walks, tasting wines and visits of wineries. It is so much more than tasting wine!
I believe this is a relatively new form of tourism, because besides going to the Champagne region in France (where, yes, duh, you buy champagne, and visit cellars) I did not think that this was very popular in the tourism demand. All of that changed somewhere in the 2000s I believe, because tourists are increasingly starting to look for experiences, and that is especially the case for my generation, the Millenials.
As we travel more, millennials seek those experiences that we want to curate for ourselves – not just general vacations. We are fed up with all-inclusive vacations where we never leave the resort. Rather than drinking wine at the hotel bar, we want to get out and chase the wine bottle at the source ourselves. Guess that explains the hashtag #traveldeeper (in the glass at least).
2. Wine Tourism Is A New & Popular Alternative Form Of Tourism (in Mallorca)
The Spanish tourism board has invested in enotourism as a way to attract an alternative form of tourism to the country than just beach visitors (which Spain is known for mostly). Indeed, you wouldn’t think about the island of Mallorca as a wine tourism destination, would you? Well, I’m gonna convince you why it is, and why it is becoming so popular!
I’ve read somewhere that the wine from Mallorca has a growing reputation for quality – the best wines winning medals at international competitions. There are many wineries on Mallorca, and honestly, and think there are many good ones. So, how to choose your winery? For me it was simple: I want my wine(ry) to be like me: stylish, personal, ecological, tasty and called Julie (or Juliana). Haha, no kidding. Or not?!
I tested (and approved) enotourism at Son Juliana winery near the village of Santa Eugenia in Mallorca, a relatively new wine property on the island which is named after the owner’s wife Julie and his daughter Ana. Together that made Juliana. “Son” comes from “posessió” in mallorquín, and it means “property of”.
“Wine and the Med go together like bees and honey. Enjoy this nectar of the Gods on Mallorca”.– abc Mallorca
I signed myself and 2 friends of mine up for a full-option tour, not exactly knowing what it would entail. The only thing we knew is that we would risk to get drunk early in the day as we would be drinking before lunch time. When we arrived, we were greeted by the expert of the property, Rafa, who guided us through this property and his expertise.
3. Enotourism Means Actively Participating & Experiencing Rather than Passively Watching
Luckily, the visit to vineyard Son Juliana was more than just tasting wine because Enotourism consists of many activities. We could not participate in the harvesting, because this is only possible at certain times of the year, mostly in September. So if you want to do it, shout out by email that you want to volunteer. (There is even a room available so you can stay on the property overnight).
We started our visit with a tour of the property. Rafa explained us that the owners bought the property in 2013, and immediately started to plant 9 different grape varieties on the area of 7 hectares. He also showed us the various processes of the wine making process, while we tasted wines. We saw, for example, how the bottling and labelling areas are connected to a refrigerated room where the wine is stored before it gets sold.
4. Enotourism is Ecological & Environmentally Friendly
“From the very beginning it was our aim to cultivate in a natural way: both in the cultivation as well as in the development of the wines. We do it without chemicals.”, Rafa explained. “In the bodega, the most modern technology is used for wine production in order to be able to precisely control and steer the various processes for wine production”, he continued.
We found out also that the energy required for processing and ‘vinification’ is mainly covered by our own solar and wind power plants. Their aim is to produce high-quality and natural wines with a typical Majorcan character. So, basically this Eno tourism is also a kind of an eco tourism?!
5. Enotourism Supports Local Business and Allows You to Taste Local Food
After the visit we went to the Vinoteca, yes, like a library of wines, a place where you can drink them all until you lose track of time. In this Vinoteca at Son Juliana you can drink wine and taste the most delicious tapas while enjoying the precious views over the Tramuntana mountain range. The tapas were all made with local products and ingredients, from the cheese to the ham to the salt to the olive oil and even the tomatoes. Loved it!
And then it is of course, time to decide which one is your favorite wine, if you can still think clear having tried them all. You can, of course, also buy the wines, here in the Vinoteca of in one of the distribution points of Mallorcaria in Palma de Mallorca, Restaurante Es Passeig in Sóller, Restaurante Elefante in Palma, Hofgut Hanau in Germany, and I.L.Casa in Germany.
6. Enotourism Is Affordable & Sustainable (For Your Wallet & Well Being)
Visit Son Juliana then and do a small wine tour (including visit to the bodega and 3 wines for 15 euros per person) or a bigger one (including 6 wines and a variety of tapas for 30 euros per person). You see, it is actually even sustainable for your wallet, and you can make it as expensive as you want yourself. For everyone’s budget an option!
The good thing about enotourism is that you are being a sustainable tourist support local economies in an ecological way. So, I definitely recommend it! Personally, I would combine it with some other rural activities, like a stay in this beautiful finca hotel next door the bodega: Rural Hotel Sa Torre de Santa Eugenia where you can relax, and that is actually also sustainable for your health and well being. Isn’t it?!
It is a historic, typically Mallorcan, country estate reformed and turned into a rural hotel, only for adults. The owners of this stately manor have always, through the generations and to this day, welcomed every guest as part of their own family. They have a beautiful garden and two amazing swimming pools, that you have almost all for yourself exclusively! ZEN…
Although the hotel is rural and historical, it is adapted to match the modern developments of our time, but still keeping the special charm of the past. To me it really felt like the perfect escape from the city where I live. It is an oasis of serenity in the rural side of the island, where you can enjoy the calm and the peaceful nature that Mallorca is known for.
7. Wine Tourism Is Tested & Approved by From Julie with Love!
I guess that my personal experience is valid enough to serve as your seventh reasons why you should try it yourself to know. Let me know where, when and how you experienced your wine trip, if you do so by leaving a comment in the box below.
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Disclaimer: This blog post has been created in collaboration with Winery Son Juliana.