Ayora Honey Festival
On Thursday 11th October, 39 U3A members left Jalon on a trip to Ayora Honey Festival in the Valencia Region. We made a quick stop for coffee just outside Villena before proceeding to Virtudes Wine and Olive Oil Bodega, Villena.
A guided tour of the Bodega by Ana showed us where the grapes were delivered from the several vineries, they were then weighed, and the sugar content was taken, for quality control purposes, before the grapes were processed into wine and finally stored in oak barrels in the wine cellar. It was fascinating as this was a truly fully functioning three generation family owned Bodega.
Afterwards we tasted the olive oil, white wine, two different red wines, plus their Tesoro Fondillon, all of which was accompanied by crusty bread, meats, nuts, olives and lovely sweet biscuits. The staff and owner of the Bodega were friendly and very welcoming and made our visit more personal. After purchasing wine and olive oil we set off for Almansa.
We arrived in Almansa and checked into Hotel Blu, a very modern 4-star hotel, with free time to either walk into the town to explore or just relax, before being served an enjoyable three-course dinner.
After breakfast we left Almansa and made our way to Ayora for the Honey Festival. The streets were so beautifully decorated with many beautiful flowers, plants and of course lots of bees in different art forms. The main area in the middle of the town was devoted to all kinds of food, honey and tapas stalls, whereas the side street stalls were selling various crafts and wares. The small town was buzzing!! with crowds of people coming from far and wide, as it also happened to be a National Fiesta Day.
There was a live demonstration of bee-keeping, where the frames were taken from the hive and then placed in a honey extractor, which spun them to extract the honey. Once extracted, the honey was passed through a screen, so that clean liquid honey was produced ready to put into containers.
After a lovely and interesting day, we left Ayora at 5.00 pm to travel back to Jalon.
by Lynn Bishop