The grape harvest festivals, also known as autumn festivals, take place every year in the city of Jerez de la Frontera during the first weeks of September.
It is a celebration to commemorate that the grapes are ready for harvesting, thus beginning the process of making the renowned wines of the region.
Throughout history, many civilizations around the world have celebrated the harvest with rituals and ceremonies in the months following summer. Through these rituals, thanks are given and the fruits of the earth are blessed.
Origins of these Jerezan festivals…
As for those in Jerez, some suggest that the grape harvest festivals are among the oldest on the peninsula, dating back to the 16th century.
If we examine the oldest sources, it appears that the festivals, as they are celebrated today, began in 1948, initiated by a group of young poets from Jerez.
The grape stomping…
The opening ceremony of the festivals is the traditional Grape Stomping, an ancient method in which the grapes, after being transported to the winepress, were crushed by the winery workers with their feet to extract the grape juice.
The perfect setting for the ceremony…
This ceremony takes place in front of the main façade of the Church of San Salvador, that is, the Jerez Cathedral, an ideal setting for the blessing of the first grape juices, while reminding us that thanks to the taxes imposed on Jerez wine, the Cathedral church was able to secure the necessary funds to complete its construction.
The 2023 festival
To help you get acquainted with the festivals, I’m providing you with the official program of activities, and I encourage you to follow this blog in the coming days to learn more about the local wine.
And if you can and feel like visiting the city, I’d be delighted to personally guide you through the city center and raise a toast with a glass of Jerez while explaining its production, types, and pairings.
Please remember that the visits…
- Start at the octagonal tower of the Alcazar.
- You can choose either morning or afternoon, at 11 am or 7 pm.
- Include a wine tasting.
- Have an approximate duration of 2 hours.
- Come at a special price of 12 euros per person during the festivals.
- Require advance reservations, so…
If you’re interested or know someone who might be, please share and contact us to make your reservation: