In his treatise of Naturalis Historiæ (Natural History), Gaius Plinius Secundus (23 – 79 AD), better known as Pliny the Elder, elaborated on Mallorca’s œnological efforts and the art of wine making. He stated quite categorically that the island’s wines were equal to the best wines of Italy, his home country.
Not quite at that time, but certainly during the 18th and 19th century, the town of Felanitx was the epicentre of wine output on the island. In 1749, Felanitx is said to have been home to some 60 bodegas within its municipal boundaries. It is also recorded that in the late 19th century, more than nine million litres of wine were exported from Felanitx, mainly to France.
Sadly, the phylloxera disease, a mean vine-eating louse, destroyed virtually all of Mallorca’s vineyards, and also devastated the ones in Felanitx (at around 1891).
With time, things have changed. Today I only know of three wine making bodegas in Felanitx. ÀN Negra Vinícultors, Bodegas Armero i Adrover and 4 Kilos Vinícola have put wine from Felanitx back into people’s minds. Luckily, this time round the quality of the fermented liquid is more important than the quantity of its output.
The photo was taken at Son Burguera, near Felanitx, Mallorca, Baleares, Spain. The date: April 30th, 2009. The time was 12:19:20. Son Burguera is the home of ÀN Negra Vinícultors.