Introduction

Lanzarote is the easternmost island of the Canarian archipelago. It is located between latitudes 28 ° 14′ 28 ° 49 ‘N and longitudes 7 º 13′ and 7 º 41’ to 1,000 km of the southwest of the Iberian Peninsula and  approximately 100 kilometres to the west of Morocco.

 

The most important characteristic in the climatology of Lanzarote is its aridity, the climate of Lanzarote can be classified as a desert.

 

The practice of cultivation of the vine develops in areas where the soil was covered by a thick and important layer of lapilli. These circumstances happened in areas close to volcanic eruptions especially those that took place between the years 1730 and 1736.

 

The process to develop cultivation consists of opening a hole of about 3m in diameter by 2 -2.5m deep until it reaches the surface of the buried soil, which produces the planting of vines with profound root systems.

 

Frequently, the hole is accompanied by a stone structure that acts like a “wind cutter” that protects the plant and together with the hole composes a viticultural landscape of Lanzarote and its maximum expression reaches in La Geria.

 

This form of cultivation does not allow the use of machinery, so the work is carried out manually, which in addition makes it impossible to employ high planting density. It results in a little yield performance with low production, however of a high quality.

 

The wines with the designation of origin Lanzarote are characterized by a marked flavour, volcanic-mineral and are perfectly balanced, with relatively high acidity. There is great diversity of varieties with a predominance of the white varieties, and within these, the volcanic malvasia is its most important representative.

 

We are talking about a native variety here, majority of which is included in the title of designation of origin Lanzarote, perfectly adapted to the soil-climatic conditions of the island and where the volcanic-mineral, binomial acidity-flavour combination determines by extension the discriminating feature of these wines.

 

There is no doubt, in a dessert habitat climate, such as in Lanzarote, exacerbated by the scorching Saharan winds and in a land of volcanic nature, that the promotion of the viticulture as a living requires visual acuity, tenacity and originality.

 

These are therefore vineyards most unique of Spain, some buried in holes in the form of funnels, so that the roots will find fertile land and land protected from the winds by circular walls of volcanic stone. All of them however cushioned by a layer of volcanic ash (picon or lapilli) in order to retain the humidity from the atmosphere.

 

This form of cultivation makes the survival of vines in the volcanic soil viable, and has allowed the presence of a native variety, the volcanic malvasia, and the adaptation of the varieties that provide wine in which the balance between volcanic-mineral and acidity is achieved perfectly, and constitutes the differentiating feature of the wine of Lanzarote.